Kav LaOved expresses its deepest sorrow for the life loss during the last military operation and wishes a full recovery and rehabilitation to the wounded. Tracking the identity of those injured on Israeli territory, reveals a high rate of non-Israeli workers, sent to work in spite of Home Front Command publications, without any means to defend themselves from danger.

Like on previous operations, rockets landed in agricultural fields and construction sites and hit Migrant Workers from China (2.5) & Thailand (12.5), and Palestinian workers. On Saturday (13.5) a missile hit Shokeda construction site, killing a Palestinian worker from the Gaza Strip and injuring two others. An impossible economic & political reality has served as the backdrop for the short life of Abdullah Abu Jabba, a 35-years-old construction worker and a father of six; and of his older brother, Jabril, who was severely injured. Why were the workers employed on a site with no shelter, during heavy shelling? Nobody knows. As the gates were shut down on the first day of the operation, the workers had nowhere to turn and were left as hostages in bombed Israel, not far away from bombed Gaza Strip.

The high number of non-Israeli workers among those who were hit, obliges Israel to investigate what happened, questioning choices made by employers on sites where workers were injures. Should it be revealed that workers were employed contrary to the instructions of Home Front Command, charges should be pressed against the employers for risking lives, and employment permits should be taken. An equally important inspection is required regarding the accommodation of non-Israeli workers, who are often living inside the construction sites and far of any sort of shelter even though these areas are within firing range.

We urge the Home Front Command to acknowledge that among the Israeli civilians living in the south, there are also many non-Israeli workers who can’t fallow local news in Hebrew and are not familiar with the frontline routine. As to today, they’re instructions are not accessible to them, and even the alerting application developed isn’t available for foreign mobiles. The information is particularly important for those sent to work in open areas, where the sirens can’t be heard.

We urge Israel to notice the enormous power gaps between non-Israeli workers and their employers and defend them. Those workers build our houses and grow our vegetables, and in times of danger they are left alone – depending on employer’s mercy. Vulnerable workers deserve Israel standing up for them, punishing employers who do not comply with work ban during emergencies, distributing information in multiple languages, making information accessible and making sure they will return home safe.

This is the bare minimum the state owes them.