Melbourne, Sept. 16 (PTI): A new study has found that Australian employers and managers, often of Indian ethnicity, frequently exploit fellow Indian blue-collar workers who come here on temporary visas.
A three-year qualitative study by Macquarie University, titled “Precarious experiences of Indians in Australia on 457 temporary work visas,” found that Indian visa holders faced numerous problems with regard to securing work and their treatment once employed. The worst form of exploitation occurred in places when the employer or manager was also of Indian origin.
Workers in non-unionised, sub-contracting or small businesses employed by “co-ethnics” were the most vulnerable.
It was also found that Indian employers justified their treatment of the 457-visa workers saying: “This is what these workers are used to in their own country.”
Some employees complained during the survey, conducted on over 40 people, that when they told their supervisors about the treatment and why it was not on a par with that of local colleagues “their employers told them that overseas workers do not have the same rules of pay and employment as local workers”.
The study shows that even though temporary skilled migration (457 visa class) to Australia is steadily increasing, “the level of support services available for this group appear severely lacking”.