7 Disturbing Facts About The Sochi 2014 Winter Games

I’m not sure if I’ve seen one single positive report about the Sochi Winter Olympics this year. When you see what’s been going on that’s no surprise…

6) Migrant Workers Left Unpaid

Sochi Olympics - Problems - Danger - Migrant Workers

A construct as ginormous as the Winter Games needs a workforce equally ginormous. To meet the need for man power hundreds of thousands of workers have been shipped in to fill the gap. With ever-increasing pressure on the budget and time and money running short, many workers did not get paid. Many had no choice but to keep working as management withheld their documents and passports.

Winter Olympics: Human Rights Watch report on migrant labour abuse at Sochi - video

Migrants from Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Serbia, Tajikistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan have flooded in to work since 2007. Many have complained of lack of pay, excessive hours, overcrowded housing, inadequate food, and, in recent months, unlawful detentions and hasty deportations.

Sochi Olympics - Problems - Danger - Migrant Workers 2

It seems that Russia’s recent crack down on illegal immigration has given them an easy get out. If they can’t pay a worker from another country they simply deport them. Problem solved.

Sochi worker with mouth sewn shut

One worker Roman Kuznetsov (pictured above) has sewn his own mouth shut and gone on hunger strike after not being paid for two months. A migrant worker from Ukraine said “People work, they don’t get paid, and leave. Then a bus comes and unloads a fresh group of workers to repeat the cycle”.

☛ Next: The Chilean Miners: Where Are They Now?

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