Identity Malta paperwork delays forcing TCNs ‘underground to work illegally’

‘The situation for foreign workers in Malta has now become untenable’

 

Delays of between six to nine months for the growing population of third country nationals (TCNs) coming to Malta to work are forcing many underground to work illegally, Patricia Graham of the EU Nationals Advisory group said on Friday morning.

Asked what she would tell third country nationals intending to come to work and live in Malta, Graham advised against such a move: “I would tell them not to do it. The situation in Malta has now become untenable.

“There is no customer care and there is no empathy at Identity Malta. Identity Malta needs to put itself in the situation of third country nationals coming here to work – to work, not to live off the state, but to work.

“But without their paperwork being processed they are being forced underground to work illegally.”

The group had organised a protest outside Identity Malta’s offices in Msida for Friday morning, but no one turned up apart from the organisers themselves, as third country workers in Malta were, according to Graham, “too scared to show their faces”.

Speaking to the media outside Identity Malta’s offices, Graham said, “I’m here today on behalf of third country nationals living in Malta wanting to work in Malta, some of whom have been waiting for between six and nine months plus to get their paperwork approved so they can work in Malta.”

Graham, cutting a rather solitary figure at a protest that was expected to have been well-attended considering the number of third country workers in Malta experiencing red tape hardships, said that when the protest had originally been proposed, “people were really keen that enough is now enough and that something needs to be done.”

She explained, “But as time went on people got more and more scared about their faces being on camera. We did think about not having any media present, but that was not going to do any good in getting their voices heard.

“So here I am.”

She observed how the police have recently made multiple arrests and deportations of third country nationals because their paperwork was not in order, in some cases as they have been waiting so long on Identity Malta.  She added that such foreign nationals looking to work in Malta are initially allowed to stay on EU territory for four months, but very few of them are receiving their working papers within that timeframe.

A chart depicting waiting times third country nationals could expect before getting their paperwork

She expressed concern that some third country nationals are using up the last of their savings in order to get their paperwork done through back door channels, and that certain employers and recruiting agencies were making use of a ‘fast track’ at Identity Malta to have permits approved.

“We know there is nothing that cannot be bought in Malta,” Graham said. “And what people who are using such channels do not understand is that they will get caught, and the fastest ticket out of Malta is to be caught without valid working papers.”

                           
                           
                               
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Paulin
Paulin
1 month ago

accidents at work can be hidden and workers can be paid at 2 euros per hour, take into account how much companies save…

Paul Bonello
Paul Bonello
1 month ago

My strong suspicion is that these delays are intended. Otherwise there would be no space for employment agencies who ask for part of the fee in cash for obvious reasons. Does FIAU check out the the intention, reasonableness and the actual use of this cash? Or is not all money laundering considered equal when it is a question of corrupt persons at government authorities having their hands greased?

Francis Said
Francis Said
1 month ago

This situation is tantamount to human trafficking.
Shame on those who are directly benefitting from this disgusting scam.
What a shame our once proud Country has been reduced to.

Da’ed
Da’ed
1 month ago

They never cares for giving appointment

Mark Ayres
Mark Ayres
1 month ago

The proliferation of TCN, of which I am one is being used to exploit individuals without the right to reside. Take a look at your local supermarket. Traditional European labour is being replaced by Asian workers. I have no problem with that but I suspect its because these workers have to have an employee register their status as part of their visa conditions, that they are cheaper to employ and easier to exploit in terms of working conditions. Incidentally for clarity of my comments I do have the right to reside. My concern is for those losing their jobs and being replaced by vulnerable perhaps desperate people.

Last edited 1 month ago by Mark Ayres
Greed
Greed
1 month ago

This is done on purpose so our greedy employers and some ministers get very cheap labour,maybe?

Annie
Annie
1 month ago

Maybe if they worked 9 hours a day, 7 days a week in shifts, the workload would be cleared but they stroll in at 9.00am, don’t start until 10am, stop for coffee at 10.30, lunch at 12.30 and go home at 3pm .. there is scope to employ foreign nationals but it’s all down to the Maltese and their not wanting anymore foreigners on the island

Ruben Xuereb
Ruben Xuereb
1 month ago

How about stopping the employment of foreigners, adding to tbe county’s severe problem of overpopulation and instead employ and train locals with a non-abusive slavery salary

Sven Azzopardi
Sven Azzopardi
1 month ago
Reply to  Ruben Xuereb

That will never happen, foreigners are the backbone of this country and the only reason it still runs well, maltese people have gotten used to not working and getting fat while sitting home cause of the apartments they rent out , the moment all foreigners move out or stop coming to malta this island will go back to the prehistoric age

Glenys Charlotte Shepherd
Glenys Charlotte Shepherd
1 month ago

Waiting since March 29th 2022 for my documents, iv been here 20 plus years
,

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