Netherlands representative Louis van Gaal has pledged to support the establishment of a compensation fund to help the families of migrant workers who died in preparation for the World Cup in Qatar.
The fund’s complaint, led by Amnesty International, said many survivors were not compensated because no postmortems were performed and their deaths were deemed to be pure natural causes rather than work accidents.
And this is despite the fact that most of them were relatively young men who worked long hours in unusual temperatures.
The organisation Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and Fairsquare sent letters to FIFA’s 14 corporate partners and World Cup sponsors in July to address abuses against migrant workers in connection with World Cup preparations. Louis Van Gaal also urged the governing bodies of the world to do so.
Louis Van Gaal in Support of the Compensation Funds
Now, with two months left before the start of the World Cup in Qatar, former Manchester United manager Louis Van Gaal has said FIFA has made their ‘smart’ decision to award the tournament and expressed support for this idea, arguing that we must face the consequences.
“Of course, I am supporting the compensation funds (for the victims of labor abuse in building the World Cup stadiums in Qatar) and I think that must happen especially when you consider that billions, I mean millions that FIFA profits from the tournament.”
“If they are so smart to organize the World Cup there they must stand with all that comes after that decision.”
Louis Van Gaal isn’t the only one supporting this compensation fund. 67 percent of adults who took part in a YouGov poll commissioned by Amnesty International last week believed FIFA pays earnings from the World Cup to compensate injured workers.
Its approval rating rose to 84% of those likely to watch at least one game of the tournament. The study looked at more than 17,000 adults in 15 countries including Argentina, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Kenya, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Switzerland, UK, and USA.
It is unclear whether the UK will join the call for a compensation fund, but Gareth Southgate and the FA are due to issue a clear statement on human rights in Qatar this week.
The England manager has previously raised the issue of workers’ rights, with captain Harry Kane calling out other captains for their players’ collective gesture in support of human rights.
FA chief Mark Bullingham, who was part of the UEFA working group on Qatar, is expected to lead the FA’s positioning.
UEFA’s Working Group on Qatar has already endorsed the creation of a workers’ center, a safe place for Qatari workers to be represented in labor disputes, as part of the legacy of the World Cup.
The FA is expected to call for the establishment of a workers’ center after being criticized for not issuing a joint statement on human rights in Qatar sooner.