German town raises ire for scheme using asylum seekers as porters 德國小鎮讓庇護申請者搬運行李引眾怒

Tue, Oct 22, 2013 - Page 11

A German town has halted a scheme offering asylum seekers 1.05 euros an hour to carry luggage at a station after rail operator Deutsche Bahn refused permission due to a public outcry and criticism that the project harked back to colonial times.

The southern German town of Schwaebisch Gmuend started the scheme recently for nine asylum seekers to help passengers get up a steep flight of metal steps erected at the station due to construction work.

The mayor originally said he hoped the program would help the integration of the town’s 250 asylum seekers, but pictures of the refugees, mostly from African nations, in bright red T-shirts and straw hats unleashed an outcry.

Complaints about the hourly rate — about eight times below the level German politicians cite for a minimum wage — poured into the mayor’s office and sparked a Facebook campaign.

Deutsche Bahn said it had not been aware of the conditions and would pay its own employees their normal rate to do the job. A spokesman for Schwaebisch Gmuend said that the conservative mayor was disappointed at Deutsche Bahn’s decision and blamed misplaced political correctness.

(Reuters)

德國一個小鎮決定中止以時薪一點零五歐元代價僱用庇護申請者搬運行李的計畫,因為在公眾憤怒和批評此舉簡直像是重返殖民時代後,德國鐵路公司已拒絕准許這麼做。

德國南部小鎮施瓦本格明德最近才啟用這項計畫,讓九名庇護申請者在火車站協助旅客爬上一道陡峭的金屬階梯,這道階梯是為因應車站附近的工程而設置。

鎮長原本表示希望這項計畫能幫助鎮上的兩百五十名庇護申請者融入社會,但當這些多來自非洲國家的難民身穿鮮紅色T恤、頭戴草帽的照片公開之後卻引來強烈抗議聲浪。

有關庇護申請者時薪比德國政治人物引述最低工資低了八倍的抱怨不斷湧入鎮長辦公室,臉書上也出現抗議網頁。

德鐵公司表示事前對此並不知情,未來會依正常薪資請公司員工搬運行李。施瓦本格明德鎮發言人則說,保守派鎮長對德鐵公司的決定感到失望,並把問題歸咎於不合時宜的政治正確態度。

(路透/翻譯:俞智敏)