A coalition of leading human rights groups called out FIFA for obfuscating the treatment and deaths of migrant workers throughout the construction of World Cup venues.
The Migrant Rights Coalition said FIFA hasn’t made any serious effort to compensate the migrant workers who helped build World Cup stadiums and infrastructure. The coalition comprises Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, FairSquare, and Equidem.
- FIFA established a Legacy Fund from a percentage of its World Cup commercial revenue in November to provide educational resources in developing countries and create an organization focused on labor best practices.
- Human Rights Watch acting executive director Tirana Hassan called FIFA’s efforts “egregious whitewashing of serious abuses against migrant workers in Qatar” and a “sinister tactic” to avoid compensating workers and their families for injuries, wage theft, and death.
- In February 2021, the Guardian reported that 6,500 migrant workers had died in Qatar since the country was awarded the World Cup in 2010. Qatari officials have disputed that figure, saying it was 400-500.
The tournament continues on Tuesday with Argentina’s semifinal match against Croatia, followed by France against Morocco on Wednesday.
Tragedy at Team Facility
A migrant worker died in a reported forklift accident at a resort used by the Saudi Arabia team while the squad was still in the tournament. The area was under FIFA’s jurisdiction.
World Cup CEO Nasser Al Khater said that “death is a natural part of life” while offering his condolences to the worker’s family.
The incident is under investigation by the Qatari government.