There are about 200 thousand “vulnerable” in agriculture, the “slaves” of the earth in the hands of corporals and exploiting entrepreneurs. And more than 400 thousand illegal immigrants. Immigrants and Italians. Growing numbers. Suffice it to say that the “vulnerable” were 140 thousand in 2017 and 160 thousand in 2018. The current 200 thousand are the sum of 136,400 units fully employed in the black and about 60 thousand workers who, although registered by INPS, appear to have an informal contract and a salary lower than that required by current regulations. In the North as in the South.
More than half of the investigations opened thanks to the law 199 of 2016 and, to be exact, 143, do not concern the southern regions. Among the most affected Regions, in addition to Sicily, Calabria and Puglia, there are Veneto and Lombardy: the prosecutors of Mantua and Brescia are each following 10 proceedings for labor exploitation. The situation in Emilia Romagna is also alarming, where exploitation is widespread in all the provinces; of Lazio and, in particular, of the province of Latina; and Tuscany, where the greatest number of proceedings are based at the Court of Prato. These are some of the scandalous numbers that emerge from the fifth report “Agromafie and caporalato” created by the Placido Rizzotto Observatory of Flai-Cgil and presented today in Rome. Almost five hundred pages of illegality and irregularity, of dramas, history, commitment. With five insights on Veneto, Campania (in particular the Piana del Sele in the province of Salerno, with some quotes from the reportage by Avvenire), Puglia and Sicily.
The numbers provided are downright worrying. In Veneto irregular work in the agricultural sector reaches 16,500 units, but it could even reach almost 22,000. In Tuscany (here the focus is the territory of Livorno), according to the report, “it is plausible that the contingent of fragile workers who are precarious (from the point of view of employment) and therefore subject to exploitation amounts to about 11,360 total units”. In Campania “the irregularity of agricultural labor relations reaches as much as 35.0%”, bringing the entire amount to almost 11,800 workers.
In Puglia (the in-depth analysis is on Brindisi and Taranto), “the groups that we can define as vulnerable (4,700) and those who are irregularly employed (and therefore as well as vulnerable are also to be considered highly exploited) reach the figure of 47,140 units (the 36.2% more than the figure estimated by Istat a decade ago) “. In Sicily (focus on Agrigento and Trapani), “agricultural workers (with an informal contract and with non-standard wages, equal to 15,678) constitute the laborer component which, even if registered with INPS, is to be considered vulnerable and therefore precarious and instrumentally subject to indecent employment practices . To this group, we must add that estimated by trade unionists and some of the social workers interviewed – based on the Istat data on unobserved work (23.8% for 2017 at national level), assuming that it is the same as the regional one). – or 13,096 units. So that the legally and socially more fragile components of foreign workers would amount to about 28,774 units “.