I went to the root of things, and found nothing but Him alone. – Mira Bai
Migrant workers chained beaten and forced into debt, exposing the human cost of producing cheap food
By Leonard Doyle
12/19/07 “The Independent” — — Three Florida fruit-pickers, held captive and brutalised by their employer for more than a year, finally broke free of their bonds by punching their way through the ventilator hatch of the van in which they were imprisoned. Once outside, they dashed for freedom.
When they found sanctuary one recent Sunday morning, all bore the marks of heavy beatings to the head and body. One of the pickers had a nasty, untreated knife wound on his arm. Police would learn later that another man had his hands chained behind his back every night to prevent him escaping, leaving his wrists swollen.
The migrants were not only forced to work in sub-human conditions but mistreated and forced into debt. They were locked up at night and had to pay for sub-standard food. If they took a shower with a garden hose or bucket, it cost them $5.
If you love Allah and spread the love of Him, all things in heaven and Earth will love you. Obey Allah, and all those in heaven and Earth will obey you.
From Reading Islam
Fatima Mali is a domestic worker from the squatter camp of Crossroads located on the outskirts of Cape Town (South Africa), who embraced Islam in 2005. Born in 1955 in the Transkei, she came to Cape Town in 1991 in search of work.
Sixteen years later Fatima is one of ten recipients of the Gifted Hajj program, that presents at least ten deserving Muslims with the opportunity of fulfilling the requirements of the fifth pillar of Islam, the pilgrimage to the cities of Makkah and Madinah. Fatima departed for Saudi Arabia on November 12.
This is Fatima’s ultimate journey. Not because it is the first time she will set foot outside her country. Not because it is the first time she will set foot on an aircraft. Not even because the hajj is the ultimate journey for every Muslim.
Fatima’s Hajj is the ultimate journey because her journey begins before she receives the good news of the Gifted Hajj. Her journey begins with the first steps she takes towards consciously embracing the life of a Muslim.