These migrant workers travel wherever they can find employment. Some just for a season before returning home, others from city to city or country to country constantly looking for work. The photojournalist Irving Villegas has been documenting the lives of seasonal workers in different countries
Every year about 270,000 workers come to Germany for the asparagus harvest, most of them from Poland and Romania. Without these people, it would be impossible to reap the crop because most unemployed Germans are not willing to do the job. They work every day for 10 hours, starting at 5am. They earn 27 to 57 cents for each kilo harvested depending on the size of the asparagus
In the grass, lying in the shade of a tree, a woman takes a 10-minute break. Her room key is hung around her neck so she doesn’t lose it
The field work in the sun, rain and cold in Fuhrberg, near Hanover, is backbreaking.
MEDITERRANEA by Jonas Carpignano, USA 2015:
Ayiva recently left his home in Burkina Faso in search of a way to provide for his sister and his daughter. He takes advantage of his position in an illegal smuggling operation to get himself and his best friend Abas off of the continent. Ayiva adapts to life in Italy, but when tensions with the local community rise, things become increasingly dangerous. Determined to make his new situation work he attempts to weather the storm, but it has its costs.
(Taken from Youtube)
“Problem: How can trends in architecture and urbanization in the daily lives of people respond to the forced migrations in Central America and everywhere through a recognition that they don’t happen in a vacuum but rather stem from root causes that force them? Why are so many people from Central America looking for a better life somewhere else and what do these conceptions mean to architecture?
Solution: Houses built with money earned by migrants in the U.S who sends dollars back to their native country for the construction of their dream house. In the process (of building in small increments over extended periods of time), it creates new architectural typologies that represent both imported construction techniques and architectural styles of other cultures in the vernacular landscapes of their hometowns…”
From the National Institute of Economic and Social Research:
“Opinion polls have shown for some time that the public sees immigration as one of the most important issues facing Britain (Ipsos Mori, 2015). At the same time, public understanding of evidence on the economic impacts of immigration is poor and strongly influenced by the media. This in turn affects the quality and content of public debate and the policy formulation process. This video presents evidence of the economic benefits of immigration to the UK and to London, but acknowledges that there has been some impact on pay, and that there are ‘winners and losers’. It is targeted at a wide audience who lack accurate information about migration impacts from which to form their opinions. It is intended to stimulate thinking and debate.”
Corporate Governance Report interviews international migration expert Sophie Barrett-Brown on the value of immigrants to UK corporations.
Immigrants to the UK have received a rush of negative press, confounded by low public support. But how valuable are immigrants to UK corporations, and how easy are they to employ? Corporate Governance Report interviews Sophie Barrett-Brown from Laura Devine Solicitors about the laws and regulations in place to govern international migration.
“For Jason De Leon, the story of undocumented migrant workers’ treacherous trek northward from Mexico through Arizona is a complex, layered contemporary narrative best told by what isn’t said, and what is left behind.
For the past four years, De Leon (photo left) – an assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan – has directed a group of U-M students in an exhaustive collection and archeological documentation of clothes, personal belongings and odd bits of refuse left in the wake of undocumented migrants traveling along the U.S.-Mexico border. While De Leon’s Undocumented Migration Project (UMP) has received widespread attention in the national news media and especially in the southwest U.S., the Institute of Humanities at U-M is the first venue to present the expansive collection of found objects of De Leon’s meticulous chronicle, which some critics claim offers an evocative testament to the “human cost of immigration.””
For more information, visit the ASU website and check out the videos below.
From their website: “An exhibition telling the heart-breaking true stories of Britain’s child migrants who were sent to Canada, Australia and other Commonwealth countries between 1869 and 1970. An estimated 100,000 British children were sent overseas by migration schemes, which were run by a partnership of charities, religious organisations and governments, and claimed to offer boys and girls the opportunity of a better life in Britain’s Empire overseas. Many migrants never saw their homes or their families again.”
“When Director Damian Weilers came to me with the idea of using The Road as a soundtrack to the plight of those displaced in Calais, I knew that this could be a platform to focus attention on an issue we both felt was important.
To me, this isn’t a political issue – it is a humanitarian one. While European governments argue, the pressure increases. On borders, on local communities, on lorry drivers who find themselves unwittingly carrying human cargo – but most of all, on those who have become stateless and desperate.
Damian went to Calais with an open mind and came away moved by the kindness and openness of people who have nothing and just want the chance to work for a better life. People who for a myriad of reasons find the place they once called home unstable and dangerous, and that to stay would mean risking their lives.”
A modern-day Grapes of Wrath, award-winning documentary The Overnighters is an intimate portrait of job-seekers desperately chasing the broken American Dream to the tiny oil boom town of Williston, North Dakota. With the town lacking the infrastructure to house the overflow of migrants, a local pastor starts the controversial “overnighters” program, allowing down-and-out workers a place to sleep at the church. His well-meaning project immediately runs into resistance with his community, forcing the clergyman to make a decision which leads to profound consequences that he never imagined.