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Polish MEP warns Poland against working in the Netherlands

MEP Biedron will work with Polish trade unions to warn Poland: “People who go to the Netherlands are sold a dream. Polish people fall for it because of their difficult economic situation.”

‘No incident’

The Labor Inspectorate writes in its recent annual report on similar practices: “The combination of dependence for work and living (and transport) is problematic. A group of people who, after a long journey from Eastern Europe, are kicked off the bus in the middle of the night and have to struggle to find shelter The employment agency that ‘ordered’ them doesn’t give home.”

According to FNV director Petra Bolster, this is not an incident, but it happens on a structural basis: “People are regularly brought to the Netherlands under false pretenses. A new distribution center will be built, but there is no thought in advance: who will work, where will they go? who live and what will they earn?”

Good employership

“We distance ourselves from this,” says a spokesperson for the ABU, the trade association for employment agencies. There are roughly 15,000 employment agencies in the Netherlands. With 520 members, the ABU represents 65 percent of the market in terms of turnover.

A spokesperson: “People who come here deserve a good reception and contract. We have a code that regulates the duty of care and information, an independent party checks our members. If things go wrong, a member can be expelled after a warning.”

IFC Work is not a member of a trade association, and is therefore not checked for good employment practices. It does have an SNF certificate and SNA quality markwhich means that it is checked for identity verification, payment of wages and tax payments.

‘No political will’

The proliferation of employment agencies is problematic, emerged from a report of the Roemer committee† There are now plans for a certificate system, in which rogue agencies can be banned from the market. The minister has planned to introduce this in 2025.

“That shows that the political will is not there yet,” says Bolster of FNV. “It is two years after the Roemer report and ten years after the first report. It is now not getting better, but worse. Why are we waiting so long for this?”

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