Changes at Mishor Adumim Checkpoint pressure Palestinian workers

The hours-long delay leads to friction between the security staff and Palestinian workers trying to reach their jobs. The workers are sanctioned with pay cuts and fines for arriving late to their shifts.

The security company that controls the entrance to Mishor Adumim, an Israeli industrial park in the occupied West Bank, has intensified security checks, yet without providing additional personnel. The hours-long delay leads to friction between the security staff and Palestinian workers trying to reach their jobs. The workers are sanctioned with pay cuts and fines for arriving late to their shifts.

By Michal Shwartz – WAC MAAN spokesperson   

מחסום מישור אדומים
photo by WAC-MAAN, free of copyright.

Since December 5, 2014, the day after a knife attack by a Palestinian youngster at the Rami Levi Supermarket in Mishor Adumim, procedures have changed at the entry checkpoint to this West Bank industrial park. The incoming Palestinian workers are required to step out of their vehicles, and every worker is subjected to a thorough body search. The same holds for the hundreds of Soda Stream workers, who arrive in company shuttles: they are required to step out of the buses and undergo inspection.

There are about 7000 Palestinian workers currently employed within the area of Mishor Adumim Industrial Park. As reported by some of them to the Workers Advice Center (WAC-MAAN), the security company’s procedural changes have not been accompanied by an equivalent increase in staff, which consists of four guards only.

As a result – Each morning a huge traffic jam forms at the entrance to the park, making the thousands of Palestinians late for work. This leads to conflicts with the security guards and heightens the tensions between the workers and their employers.

On December 15, at about 6.30 am, about 2000 workers who were waiting in line blocked the entrance to the park in a spontaneous protest against this condition. The response was to send more security forces to contain the protest.

The workers at one of the factories told the Independent Trade Union Centre WAC-MAAN about warnings from their employers that lost time because of lateness will cost them deductions from their pay. Others have reported that as punishment for lateness, their employers have refused to give them the usual holiday allowances. The workers are bitter at having to pay for the damages caused by the security procedure. They are producing video clips that document the increasingly unbearable scene at the checkpoint.

The checkpoint is not staffed by the Israeli army but by a private security company; it is sponsored by the Maale Adumim Economic Company, which belongs to the settlement’s Municipality. The security company demonstrates little or no interest in the consequences of the intensified procedures. Workers told WAC-MAAN that on January 1 the Israeli police arrived at the scene and criticized the security guards, demanding that they enable faster entry. As long as the police were present this was upheld, but as soon as they left the guards reverted to their slow patterns.

It should be noted that in order to receive a work permit, Palestinians must prove that they have no criminal record, particularly none relating to national security; then and only then, as a second step, they must find an employer who will ask the Israeli Military Authorities to allow them to work in the Industrial Park. Only when these conditions are met are they given a permit.

For more details call Yoav Tamir, of WAC-MAAN’s Jerusalem office: 972-50-7859475 or send mail yoavt@maan.org.il

MORE...

The East Jerusalem Project

Significant Achievements of MAAN – Workers Association in Protecting Workers’ Rights

Since the outbreak of the war, MAAN – Workers Association has secured the labor rights, social security benefits, unemployment benefits, and support for work accidents for over 300 residents of East Jerusalem. This includes opening checkpoints and distributing food vouchers, translating to over 3 million NIS in benefits. Notably, over 40% of those who received assistance are women.

READ MORE »
Palestinian Workers

The government’s decision to massively import overseas workers is social lawlessness, a disaster for both the economy and security. It must be revoked and Palestinians must be allowed to return to their jobs in Israel

Wednesday, May 15, the Israeli government approved a structural reform on employment of migrant workers where it allowed a ceiling of 330,000 overseas workers in the Israeli job market. MAAN sees this decision as a step that defies all economic logic, contradicts labor market planning, and opens the way to a dangerous expansion of human trafficking for labor purposes in Israel. In addition, the decision reflects complete disregard for the consequences of the continued halt in employment of Palestinians.

READ MORE »
The East Jerusalem Project

Severe employment crisis in East Jerusalem ahead of Ramadan

On the eve of Ramadan, Palestinian residents of East Jerusalem are facing an economic and social crisis exacerbated by a 7.6 per cent increase in unemployment since the outbreak of the war. Despite the crisis, the government is severely undermining its own five-year plan for East Jerusalem. MAAN Workers Association (hence MAAN) calls on the mayor and the incoming city council to secure budgets to reduce socio-economic gaps in the city.

READ MORE »
Palestinian Workers

MAAN and Kav Laoved write to Immigration and Population Authority and demand to reserve a place in the quota for Palestinian workers with a permit who resigned/fired during the “Iron Swords” war

The two workers’ rights groups wrote on Feb. 13 to Mr. Moshe Nakash the head of the Immigration and Population Authority and demanded that special measures will be taken to alleviate the suffering of Palestinian workers and also to enable Israeli employers to overcome the crisis and keep their experienced workers.

READ MORE »

אנא כתבו את שמכם המלא, טלפון ותיאור קצר של נושא הפנייה, ונציג\ה של מען יחזרו אליכם בהקדם האפשרי.

رجاءً اكتبوا اسمكم الكامل، الهاتف، ووصف قصير حول موضوع توجهكم، ومندوب عن نقابة معًا سيعاود الاتصال بكم لاحقًا








As an organization committed to the rights of workers without distinction of religion, race, nationality, gender, or profession - democracy is our essence. We strongly oppose the authoritarian laws that the extreme government of Netanyahu, Lapid, Bennett, and Smotrich is attempting to impose.

Without democracy, there are no workers' rights, just as a workers' organization cannot exist under dictatorship.

only a victory of the democratic camp will enable a discussion on the Palestinian issue and lead to an alternative solution to occupation and apartheid while ensuring human rights and citizenship for all, Israelis and Palestinians alike. As long as the apartheid regime persists, the democratic camp will not succeed in defeating Israeli extremists. Therefore, we work to involve the Arab and Palestinian society in the protest.

We invite you:

To march with us in protests and to build an alternative, democratic, Jewish-Arab professional union in Israel. Join our quiet WhatsApp group today, "Marching with us in protest."

To join MAAN and unite workers in your workplace. Read here how to join the organization.

To follow MAAN's work on social networks.

Please write your full name, phone number, and a brief description of the subject of your inquiry, and a representative from our organization will get back to you as soon as possible.