Thursday, March 1, 2012

Slavery: still evil

A shocking story:
A New York woman who lives in a 34-room, 30,000-square-foot mansion is facing a federal criminal charge related to her employment of an illegal alien who allegedly served as a domestic servant in a “forced labor situation” that included her working 17-hour days, seven days a week, and sleeping in a walk-in closet.

Acting on a tip received by the National Human Trafficking Resource Center, federal immigration agents last year removed the servant from the 12-acre estate (pictured below) on the Mohawk River in Rexford, a hamlet 20 miles north of Albany.

A subsequent criminal investigation determined that the woman--who barely spoke English and came from the Kerala state in India--was paid about 85 cents an hour during the 67 months she worked for Annie George and her husband (who died in a plane crash in mid-2009).
One of the problems of not working to solve the problem of illegal immigration is that these sorts of situations in which the immigrant is exploited and abused can flourish. But the answer to the problem is complex, as we all know. In the meantime, at least we can all agree that this kind of domestic slavery is clearly evil.

2 comments:

  1. Slavery isn't legal anywhere, but it still flourishes everywhere.

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  2. There is another side to this story that the U.S. media doesn’t report. The maid’s claims are far from the truth. She approached Annie George’s family through a pastor for help and a place to stay after running away from the U.N. family who employed her. George’s family agreed to have her stay with them and pay her for their toddler’s care. There were other maids including an American lady Nicole. In her words, VM only had to care for George’s youngest child while others cooked and cleaned. Nicole says VM had a comfortable life and spent almost the whole day watching TV and on the phone with her family and hardly did any work. VM went out for daily walks and could’ve easily gotten help. Annie’s friend Sophia from India who visited Annie, observed that VM slept on a king bed. Why would they have VM sleep in a closet when they had so many rooms? Why wouldn’t they hire anyone legally and pay the same for childcare? The only crime here is that they hired an illegal worker and may have paid below min wage. But we all know that it’s a common practice. Moreover, Annie could’ve assumed she has a visa considering she worked for a U.N. family. To accuse Annie of slavery and subject her to name calling and harsh criticism is unfortunate, especially after helping VM with a place to stay and a way to earn

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