We'll Get By With a Little Help
By Judy Evans
December 6, 2015 10:06pm CST
Yesterday Vince picked up two backpackers from the local hostel and they helped us dig some trenches. A tree root had broken through a water pipe and we needed to lay a new pipe. Once we could have managed on our own and enjoyed doing so but now these chores seem much harder so rather than bust ourselves, we hired two strong young lads for a few hours. One was from Taiwan but had spent much of his life in America. He must have returned to Taiwan and continued his college education at some point. He said the person teaching English in Taiwan was not very good and occasionally our young friend would correct very obvious errors. In the end, the teacher promised him a 'B' grading as long as he didn't attend any more classes. The other disturbing factor was that both young men had been paid about half the hourly rate that is set by the government. As the employment was very short-term and they didn't want to make waves, they didn't complain. I felt it was very bad that commercial enterprises would exploit these young people in this way. Photo copyright Vince Evans
13 people like this
7 Dec 15
It's so nice of you to get the backpackers to help. It's really good for them to gain real life experience while traveling. I think the Taiwanese will get to learn more English while traveling in Australia than attending the class. I guess some enterprises might just take advantages of those young people, and they are foreigners too.
• Bunbury, Australia
7 Dec 15
No, they are here legally but they don't want to rock the boat by speaking out. I think it was just two days work - but at half the proper hourly rate. The guy who runs the hostel parcels out the jobs so no-one wants to get on his wrong side. It gets a bit tricky I gather. I don't know much about it but I do know it's not fair. I might write to our local paper just to bring it to people's attention.
• Mandurah, Australia
7 Dec 15
It is mean that people can't be paid what they are worth. Last year I went to Esperance on the bus and I met a backpacker who had just enjoyed Christmas in Sydney, surfed at the Gold Coast and now was on his way somewhere past Katanning. He said he wanted to see the 'Outback'. I just wanted to tell him to go home. Hopefully though he did enjoy his time on the farm and saw something he will remember forever. Not quite the Outback but country Australia at least.