Immigrant: ‘I Wish I were Eritrean’
Yaakov Tamir of Kiryat Malachi immigrated to Israel several years ago from Ethiopia. He found a job in a factory, where he has been working for years to support his family.
In recent months, however, Tamir has faced growing problems at work as he finds himself increasingly in competition with Eritrean citizens who entered the country illegally.
“We try to survive each day at work. The owner doesn’t care about us, he prefers Eritreans because they work more hours for the same money,” he told Arutz Sheva.
“I’m breaking my back so that the owner will see me working harder than the Eritreans. They work endlessly for minimal pay. I have a family, I can’t work 24 hours a day,” he added.
The factory once employed primarily Jews, Tamir said. However, “The owner fires Jews and hires Eritreans… today most [workers] are Eritrean.”
“I’m sorry to say this but – I wish I were Eritrean,” he said. “To live without paying taxes… save money… “
The problem of competition with foreign workers who have little need to pay for local goods and no family ties in the country affects primarily the “weaker population,” he noted.