Why Palestinians Prefer Working for Israelis

Israelis pay and treat Palestinian workers far better than fellow Palestinian employers

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If Israeli Jews are such blood-thirsty haters of all things Arab, then why do Palestinian Arabs prefer working for them?

Palestinian Authority TV acknowledged as much in recent broadcasts of the program Workers’ Affairs, which were translated by Palestinian Media Watch.

A number of Palestinian laborers were interviewed, and openly stated that both pay and work conditions for Arabs are far better with Israeli employers than with fellow Palestinians.

“The lack of monitoring of [Palestinian] owners of companies and factories and their exploitation of workers is what has forced people to Israel, to work and build in Israel,” said Qassem Abu Hadwan, a laborer from Hebron. “Workers have to go to Israel, because no one [in the PA] gives them what they deserve for their work.”

Indeed, figures released by the Palestinian Authority’s Central Bureau of Statistics revealed that “the average [daily] wage for employees in the West Bank was 94.1 shekels, and 61.9 shekels in the Gaza Strip, while the average for employees in Israel and the settlements was 198.9 shekels.”

Israeli-Arab Attorney Khaled Dukhi of Worker’s Hotline explained that the situation is even worse for female Palestinian workers, who have to pay exorbitant fees to “middlemen.”

“In practice, he [the Palestinian employer] takes 50%, 60%, and even 70% of her salary. The middleman steals two thirds of her salary,” noted Dukhi.

There are currently some 120,000 Palestinian Arabs working legally in Israel and the Jewish settlements, with thousands more seeking work permits or making their way across the Green Line illegally.

It is difficult to imagine how an independent Palestinian state would survive economically when so little of its labor force wants to work there.


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