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tv   Close up  Deutsche Welle  July 9, 2019 5:30am-6:01am CEST

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those are big changes and most start with small steps global ideas tell stories of creative people and innovative projects around the world like to use them to predict the climate to green energy solutions and reforestation. they create interactive content teaching the next generation about environmental protection and words of turning to build something here for the next generation global ideas the multimedia environment series on w. pushes you he says oh you've left some tomatoes there he shouts at you pick them up pick them up. if anything's left he's not happy. and slaps you in the face he hurts you he has no respect for you and that is
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slavery slavery not just exploitation. exploitation is something like poor pay but when they push you when you have to work in the burning sun and have no say no papers and you sleep in the ghettos. all that is slavery modern slavery slavery doesn't require changes no slavery is what's happening here this is slavery. yvonne sonia calls them slaves the hundreds of thousands of seasonal farm workers from africa and eastern europe on fields in italy yvonne who comes from cameroon was once one of them. today he fights for their rights and against
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a mafia style system of dumping prices abuse of power and exploitation iran wants to bring the people who profit from that system behind bars and end the farm work is inhumane living conditions. this is typical housing for the immigrants he. used the fireplace for all kinds of things because there's no electricity no lights no running water nothing. but they know how to help themselves they use this for heating and cooking. there's the table. here's a loyal and the plates they eat off. look
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here at mattresses. yeah maybe 40 people can sleep here. 40 people you've seen it. this is a typical house for 4 people. well sometimes plaster from the ceiling falls on them when they sleep it's much too cold here there are no windows they close up the openings with sheet metal so. the migrant workers have to buy old basic amenities from the criminal gang masters called the copper ali often they come from the same countries as the foreign workers. for a right mattress feltham and 10 year old whose. mom
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is always in that yellow house over there are italians. not foreigners italians. they do business with. us it's the only house around here with running water and electricity. and the people have to go over there to charge their mobile phones because there's no electricity here they'll take $0.50 for charging a phone to wash yourself over there it cost a euro or euro and a half. disapprove it makes me want to cry. i feel disgust and hatred when i see human beings living under these conditions today in the 21st century in italy. so it's just sick of all of the despicable us and the whole world knows about it everyone knows about it but they don't care because these are migrants. the migrants are treated like animals. they're supposed to work to boost the business of the farmers and
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politicians. but no one sees them as people so. that's literally welcome to italy. caesium you can even the migrants who live in the camps are completely controlled by the people known as. make up or are there a kind of mafia. when the farmers need workers for the fields they call the cop alley on the phone. and they cut ali abuse this position of power to exploit and control the immigrants and they live side by side with them in their evolve it.
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the a purely on basilica to regions of southern italy a known as the country's vegetable gardens a purely alone produces a 3rd of tomato harvest in the remote areas around the fields we find the so-called ghettos. in time the shanty towns have grown up. while it also shall you will need a hidden camera in the fields put down your big camera. and i think. i'll name but. probably don't want cameras. to fail because that would mean people could see their illegal business. lazy
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the immigrants don't like them because they don't want to be seen in the ghettos they were ashamed of being filmed and that someone in their home countries in africa might see them. when they talk with their parents or friends in africa they tell them a very different story that their lawyers. i work in an office they lie because they're ashamed to admit that they live under these conditions. more than 3000 people live here jaring the harvest most africans people who have been arriving on italy shores for the past decades and to italy feels it's been left to deal with without help from europe many of the farm hands are undocumented the government turns a blind eye without these low wage workers produce would end up rushing in the fields. there's
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garbage everywhere there are mosquitoes and flies and it stinks. these camps have no sanitation they are lawless places that might pose a personal risk to yvonne. he believes that the death threats he receives originated here the copper ali who live here know him as a tenacious opponent for years he has been going to camps like things together evidence of the gangmasters illegal activities he seeks out eyewitnesses identifies perpetrators he knows many of the residents and their stories. like this man from sudan who fled to italy around 20 years ago. and then kept. his dream of a better life ended in this shack where he sells used clothes his customers the
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refugees from around the world. right. in front of the store a man suddenly approaches yvonne knows him as a couple rally for a while he hides his anxiety but then just in the visit quickly. we want an end to these ghettos we want infrastructure water light kitchens decent sleeping arrangements and my dream is to achieve that with a no cop organization. develops and works in rome not far from the vatican.
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here in his apartment he founded no cup it's a system that certifies produce farmed and ethically acceptable conditions. look up. it's based on article 4 of the universal declaration of human rights which says no one shall be held in slavery or servitude slavery and the slave trade shall be prohibited in all their forms. to fill. up such an office no cop is an organization that says no to the cop or a lotto system of gangmasters. it works with a system of labels. you need to get it unity kit will put these labels on all the products from farmers who don't exploit their workers. what. they call call of
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them we will monitor to ensure that the rights of the farm workers are respected they. 3 different show there and we have formed a partnership with a union of small farmers called ultra greek ultra. up and down they have around 60000 farmers in their association so we're starting out with a good little base. in 2017 if on sunday i was made a night of italy's order of merit. he was awarded the on a by a tie in president. his commitment to human rights and his efforts to expose mafia like structures in farming. that was a grandiose moment in my life. a unique moment because i received this honor from a country that was not my own i'm not a talian i'm cameroonian for the moment. and receiving this prize from
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a country that is not my own makes me very happy. in 2017 also became a father it was a good year but it was overshadowed by death threats but his enemies knew that yvonne was determined to take them to court to the highest court in the country if need be. the fear weighs heavily on his wife or on iker. or are. you not usual that all. the more thoughtful and ok less threats are unfortunately a sign of how well he is doing his work. how much he is disturbing the interests of the big players. and that's very disturbing to us as a family but the one of the few that are on the up especially when he goes back to the places where these threats are coming from for we pray for him. but we worry
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that he will reach his goal without harm or useful but of course what if something . akin to get there when he was what i wanted to move on has shown that he's very brave and very obstinate. and he's demonstrated that change is possible slowly through hard work and the sacrifices he makes i support him every day in this battle that he fights. back in 2007 if i'm came to italy not to fight but to study he'd been fascinated by the country since his youth it all went well until he failed an exam and lost his scholarship at his university in 2 and. he needed cash and his search for work took him to nada in the south of the country to harvest tomatoes.
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he arrived at this train station on july 10th 2011 what he experienced then changed his life forever. today he's returned to the site on the edge of town with back then some 1000 workers from africa were living in tents under plastic tarps or out in the open. sit down long walk play place it was unbelievably filthy and hot here. and i asked the good lord where have i ended up here. wanted to know that you like come from a completely different context interregnum says that she was there i lived in a decent house a student dormitory with a toilet all of his my own room
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a bed. and then suddenly i found myself here sleeping on a mattress on the ground. or. as he takes us across the property if i am discovers that farm workers a living here again. there are not many of them but the conditions are hardly better than they were when he was he out. quite often only 3 days after i arrived i encountered a couple who called himself make. he was from sudan he was a big strong guy called mekhi so. for the next 4 days
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yvonne worked on the field brutally supervised by mickey he was paid 3 and a half euro's for a 350 kilo crate of tomatoes on the 1st day he managed to pick 4 cranks that made 14 jirus he had to pay $10.00 of them to make even transport food and water so after a 14 hour day in the heat and with beatings he made 4 euros. that's how it was. and if you got sick i remember one mate of mine and he fell down just like that. the sun was too strong he just collapsed. that was heart. when he fell i went over to him and asked him what was wrong. he said.
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i got some water and trickled in on him. and i told the cop what a holiday. he has to go to the hospital. but i wasn't one nearby. the hospital was far away. they said leave him there if you go to the hospital you'll have to pay 50 euros for the transport that's not exploitation any more for me that slavery a new slavery. 5 his collapse on the field. i work for 5 days. and on the 5th day we said enough. we are angry enough is enough we want a contract we want our rights to be respected. we are tired of being treated like slaves this is us. yvonne helped organize
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a strike the 1st large scale uprising among seasonal farm workers in italy the men from the ghetto joined it telegram or a local broadcast to report on it then the death threats came and yvonne fled but his anger brought him back again after nearly 3 months the harvest was starting to run on the fields the farmers gave in and offered higher pay and labor contracts the government in rome passed a law against the brutal capra lotto system and soon after the 1st trial of farmers and gangmasters began with the bonds involvement. his fight for human rights has now become a full time occupation it's a fight on many fronts in production halls on the fields in court and increasingly
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at negotiating tables here in brazil a carter he's meeting with some farmers who'd like to have his partners as the direct employers of the farm hands the meeting was arranged by events closest ally trade union leader gianni fabrice. italian fruit and vegetable production is hovering on the brink. products are subject to price dumping. the retailers say to the pharmacy but we'll pay you the same price for your peaches as we pay for peaches from morocco or turkey that much cheaper than yours you want to sell that's the price that's the reality of farming in italy. well system
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here and the system is kept alive by the big companies in the food industry sector . they're a bit clearer pushing down the prices to rock bottom so that the farmers have no margin to maneuver. there so they are forced to exploit their workers. the van is working with farmers and trade unionists to find a better way. of. notably. we have to raise people's consciousness and beg for consumers to have more social responsibility. consumers have to realize that behind the kilo of tomatoes that they buy is work a little work in which people are being exploited for. work which is ethically correct and if this rethink doesn't happen and we are dead. due dates later if i am receives a message that gives him
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a boost an italian supermarket chain office in his 1st deal it will take an initial batch of no cap products with up to a 1000000 euros in its assortment that will make it attractive for farmers to work with yvonne and his organization. in the town of grass santa yvonne shows how the no cut system works here a farmer picks up his workers himself rather than leaving the transport to the criminal labor brokers. psyche for the full this is what gives the copper ali their power that's how they bring their workers to the fields. what is i mean there's no public transportation so what the cost but i really who take care. they're transporting and abused them
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in a couple of numbers. the gangmasters pack up to 30 people into a van that is authorized to hold a maximum of 8 years it would be grovelling in those overfilled vans is terrible. not much uppity to most of them don't have any windows because the cops at all you don't want the police to see that they're carrying 20 to 25 people. were so inside there's hardly any air there are deaths every year shock i mean. within the space of 2 days in orcas 20 i seen 2 separate crashes of overfield fans claimed the lives of 15 african one because. of a federal decision on what i wanted to be different. so these guys these workers came here in a normal vehicle. they didn't pay anything for the transport. as
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you can see their clothing is white like it's work clothes in moscow they also have protective masks and gloves to protect their hands. we're taking care of safety in the workplace. before anyone starts working here he gets a contract and the pay is in accordance with legal requirements. the last tomatoes of the season being picked on this field one of the workers thomas from guyana agrees to talk with us pretty fully. we don't have contracts. don't their contracts or account work you course and europe or italy if you don't have to walk on trying to walk by me you can walk so we always become. it think i'm a bad person or i think i'm ounce i'm not the one being nuts i mean one being
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different. if skin black and red black blood c.d.c. intern so all we are one defend calista 111 people the man on whose fields thomas and the others are working also sees it that way. b.v. known as family has been growing organic vegetables here for 30 years. hey guys just pick the red tomatoes just the really red ones. are. just step even yarn as workers have contracts he's one of a growing number of farmers who want to break out of the system of extreme price pressure that's turning them into perpetrators look up at other medical for me the couple are allowed to system is the worst mistake in existence since your using a labor force that's being fundamentally exploited. harvesting tomatoes is very exhausting and so this labor should be accorded
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a proper value them and. that's another reason why it's important to make contracts and protect the workers. more. for the tomato harvest we pay $5.00 euros net per hour plus social contributions that's twice as much as in the cup or a lotto system. the entire system of the tomato harvest needs to change the battle against these prices is extremely tough and there are big difficulties that it was. an italian trade union has calculated what a solution might look like if the big retail chains paid the farmers just $0.02 more per kilogram of tomatoes they would have $235000000.00 euros more income with that they could set up humane housing and working conditions for the farm workers and the problem with the copper ali would vanish on its own.
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it's late october 28th election in southern italy. lawsuit against gangmasters unexploited farmers has been going on for 5 years. in this course he celebrated a great triumph the explosives were convicted in the 1st trial but now their appeal could end in a dramatic defeat. doesn't post here today we are in appeals proceedings. in the 1st trial 9 were sentenced to 11 years in jail. they were convicted of 2 in italian that is of enslavement. 9 capitally and 3 italian farmers were convicted.
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at the start we were around 50 people who went to the police to press charges fairly normal we named the names of all those who exploited us today there are just 8 of us with that courage and the main witness the more. the other side seated here in the dock have been defending themselves with all available means the final message shown up within a matter of expensive lawyers but yvonne has been steadfast. similar to court because all those men are guilty of abusing workers i was a victim of that and i denounced it. if the appeals court was up hold the guilty verdict it would be a remarkable success for yvonne be it a symbolic one. if. it's in the clear because it's
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clear that this trial has not changed the working conditions for the farmhands in the fields. the caliber lotto system is still in place everywhere in italy. and the terrible living conditions of the people in the ghettos without. water or light are still there i knew that this trial would not change all that. none the less if i am sagna i seized the child as a milestone. myself all up and assume it's worth fighting. we're living in a world where you have to fight if you need a solution if you don't fight nothing will change. things will only change if you fight. we are prepared sources of sports.
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