Updated: 01/09/12 : 14:18:53Printable Version
Justice Gerard Hogan ruled on a case concerning Amjad Hussein, trading
as Poppadom Restaurant, challenging a decision of the Labour Court with
respect to Muhammad Younis, who was awarded €92,000 for breaches of
Hussein owns the Poppadom Restaurant on Sligo's
O'Connell Street although the case was centred on the Clondalkin branch
of his restaurant chain. See full story at SligoToday.ie 14/9/11
Justice Hogan found that the Employment
Permits Act 2003 prevents an undocumented worker from seeking redress
under labour law as the employment contract cannot be recognised.
Gráinne O' Toole of the Migrant Rights Centre Ireland said, 'A
fundamental problem with the Employment Permits Act has been uncovered.
This is devastating, not only for Mr Younis, but for all undocumented
migrants who are now left without protection against exploitation under
Irish labour law. It is a sad day for Ireland when a man who suffered
extreme exploitation is denied justice while his exploiter walks free.'
many years, Mohammed Younis was subjected to modern day slavery. He was
paid 51 cent per hour. He worked extremely long hours with no day off.
The employer failed to renew Muhammad's work permit which rendered him
undocumented. Mr Younis said ' I did nothing wrong and instead I am
being further punished this decision. I am in a black hole and
devastated by this news.'
Left: The Sligo branch of Amjad Hussein's Poppadom Restaurants
Justice Hogan said he would send a copy
of his judgement for consideration by the government. He stated 'there
must be some concern that this legislation will produce consequences
which were not foreseen or envisaged. Specifically it may not have been
intended by the Oireachtas that undocumented migrant workers should be
effectively deprived of the benefit of all employment legislation by
virtue of his illegal status...'
Grainne O' Toole continued, 'the
law as it is now interpreted gives a green light to exploitative
employers. Other countries have protections in place where undocumented
workers, who have had their employment rights violated can seek legal
redress. The Government must act immediately to guarantee that
undocumented workers are protected under employment law.'
conclusion, solicitor James McGuill acting for Muhommad Younis stated
'we will examine all avenues including a challenge to the Supreme Court
and the European Court of Human Rights.'
Photo: Mohammed Younis was subjected to modern day slavery. He was paid 55 cent per hour. He worked extremely long hours with no day off.