Slavery still exists in Israel or work and travel wise (part I)
During last two decades with the airline traffic development going abroad became incredibly popular among youth circles. Who wouldn’t like to better one’s financial state? Especially when simultaneously you have a chance of getting to know cultures, traditions, languages; making new friends, getting useful experience and fabulous impressions. It is fashionable, exciting and…..expensive. Well, Ms. Life’s lessons inevitably cost. So this article is for YOU, dear reader, who are eager to learn WHAT can happened when you don’t have enough information and experience. HOW to avoid dealing with a dishonorable employer and WHEN to start asserting your rights .
Tips and welcoming wishes.
I believe that the following tips are by no means applicable only just for Israel. The job market’s psychology is generally common. So having come to the place you intend to spend marvelous several summer months, you should think about:
1. Wait a second, what about choosing a country? It’s one of the most defining factors of your success. Learn as much as possible about its geographical position and climate; political, economic and ethnical situation; its culture, customs; religion and its role in the everyday life. For instance you should know that each and every Friday afternoon all over Israel the life dies away till the next Saturday afternoon. It means that there’s no public transport, most of the shops, markets and public institutions are closed.
2. Second: be A.W.A.R.E. Information rules the world, remember? So be in contact with your embassy, learn your rights and obligations; prepare your health insurance in advance. Learn a couple of expressions and words on the language of the country you picked up for an exciting ever journey.
3. Third. Remember: C.O.N.T.R.A.C.T is your best friend and defender. Despite whatever promises, NEVER agree to work without signing up an official document or an agreement. Don’t forget – there are thousands of dishonorable employers, who wouldn’t mind to abuse your lack of experience and language skills.
4. Forth: Are you a chatterbox? Bring with you a tiny locker (in Israel it’s double price). Don’t tell to your employer how poor the country of your origin is, what is the average level of salary in your home town and other unnecessary details. Let him keep an opinion that you came for THIS job because you are a WORKAHOLIC and can’t live a day without scrubbing the floor, changing diapers, or cheating the customers.
5. Fifth. Hey, speak up! Is that exciting to be a nodding figurine? You should not be afraid to say “No”. Never show that you REALLY NEED this job and ready for whatever conditions. “The offered salary is not adequate for the claimed amount of work”, or “I don’t agree with your attitude, I am a person with human dignity”, or “We agreed about 9 working hours, what about overtime? As far as I know it should be paid double”. Discuss all the details as your duties, requirements for the quality of work, your schedule, days off, your board & living (if needed)
6. Sixth. Don’t tease your employer. Remember – if something is seductively opened, the volunteers to use it will rapidly stretch out their hands . So lock your laptop, i-phone, personal diary, and….right (!) your non-stop chatting device with a password. Minimalize the risk of your correspondence being seen; secure your personal life against the rumors. Making friends with your boss is no good, remember in 3,4,6 months you will say bye-bye to this place, people and your boss.
7. Don’t be afraid to leave! I did it 5 times until found a nice place with adequate salary, splendid people and respectful attitude. The stuff members were grateful for the work I was doing and were not shy to show that.
8. The last one. Hey, enjoy! Couch surfing community, endless trips, and just sea and the sun will help you on the way to euphoria. After all it’s your unforgettable impressions, just take a spare head in a bag pack and a friend or two (renting an apartment, damn it, scratches the pocket).
I myself spent in Israel 4 working months. The result: 5 different jobs, fluent Hebrew, new friends, valuable cultural experience. And rebuilding of all my idealistic perceptions. I can’t but admit the fact that intuition and confidence are not the best advisors in terms of getting a job. But contract and knowing your rights definitely are.
In the next chapter of this article you will have a chance to read about my fascinating nanny- experience. You will learn what is the average level of salary in Israel and when it’s high time to start asserting your rights! Two thousand years passed since Bnei Israel (the sons of Israel) were enslaved in Egypt. Times changed, people apparently didn’t. There always will be the weak, naïve and inexperienced and those who are ready to take advantage, to abuse, suppress. However today it’s up to you weather to keep silence or to become involved. Speak up! Remember, you’re a free human-being with the rights for respectful attitude, your personal free time, freedom of mind and correspondence; merited valuation of your work and paid overtime. Being cautious (not paranoiac, that’s different) may save your head and buttocks from concerns; it can also deprive Israel of fools, ready to work 16 hours per day for a penny. And don’t forget the great cabbalistic rule of sharing: Got a lesson – share your knowledge! And let your journey be the greatest and the safest!