“Millions of labour migrants are leaving Ukraine. Their rights must be observed” – Roman Semenukha

Today, Ukraine is among top ten countries of the world in terms of labour migration. Our state did not experience such an outflow of citizens even in the difficult 90-s.

“The situation has even become worse,” said MP Roman Semenukha. “After all, the majority of those leaving are well-qualified specialists – doctors, scientists, engineers, IT specialists. They are leaving not only because they are seeking better salaries abroad, but also because they see no future for themselves and their children in Ukraine. The main reasons for migration today are the unaffordability of housing in Ukraine, corruption, poor quality of education, poor medical care, inability to defend one’s rights in court, etc.”

Only according to the official statistics of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, about 5 million Ukrainian citizens are legally abroad. This is more than 10% of the country’s population. Unfortunately, among them, there are many migrants who, because of their own desperation, are at risk and often become victims of human trafficking.

“The scale of this phenomenon is overwhelming: the National Police report that in just nine months of 2017, 263 crimes related to human trafficking were recorded. And this is three times more than in entire 2016,” adds Roman Semenukha. “This is due to the fact that the state practically does not regulate the activities of companies engaged in the employment of our citizens abroad.”

The people’s deputy says that today it is very easy to open such a company in Ukraine – there are no strict requirements for obtaining licenses.

Roman Semenukha continues, “A bill that is supposedly aimed at changing the situation has been introduced for the parliament’s consideration,” says Roman Semenukha. “In particular, it envisages providing the Ministry of Social Policy with a possibility to conduct unscheduled inspections of such companies, toughens requirements towards intermediary firms. In its turn, Samopomich insists on making this document effective, not declarative. For example, to have it determine the requirements towards the managers of legal entities that carry out intermediary functions in employment abroad or the self-employed individuals leading such activities and add new essential terms of the employment contract concluded with the migrant. Unfortunately, these items were ignored.”

According to Roman Semenukha, Samopomich will insist that in preparation for the second reading important regulations should be taken into account and that the requirements towards the intermediary companies should become tougher.

“The rights of Ukrainians, the rights of labour migrants must be observed. And, if it has happened so that people are leaving our country, then we must do everything possible to make them feel safe abroad,” the MP added.


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