Home   About Us   Focused People and Communities   Activities   Awards   Donations   Downloads   News Articles   Success Stories   Contact Us
Focused People and Communities
Quarry Communinty - Issues

Quarry Communinty - Issues

Stone Quarries in Maharashtra
Maharashtra, with over 33 cities, is growing in population and therefore construction activity. Over 1.5 million workers are engaged in the stone quarry and crushing sector supplying material for road and building construction. Stone quarry workers are from poor sections of the community such as tribals, dalits, and landless labourers.

Stone quarry workers have migrated with their families from their home village to earn money for their survival. The reasons for their migration are indebtedness, drought, being displaced from their land and a lack of work or opportunity in their local village.

Living Conditions

Stone quarry workers live and work at the quarry site. They live in indecent conditions with very limited or no access to:
Clean water
Fresh food

Working Conditions

There is no health and safety implemented at their worksites resulting in unsafe working conditions and regular accidents. They are employed through a contractor and therefore:
are sometimes not paid
are easily exploited
have no insurance
have no social security
have no union to support them

Legal Issues
They have no birth record and aren’t registered with the government.
They appear in no census or population survey.

As they are migrant workers they have no residential proof. They therefore get no access to:
Ration cards
Public food distribution systems
Government schemes and programs

There is no law that regulates their welfare.

Health Issues

Workers and their families are exposed to dust from the quarry. This causes many health issues including:
Skin allergies
Lung disease
Women and children are particularly vulnerable to these conditions.

Dysentery  is common due to a lack of clean water.
Over 80% of women suffer from anemia and gynecological problems.
Workers are vulnerable to HIV/AIDS.

Social Issues
There are a number of social issues working against quarry workers and their families. These include:
High rates of illiteracy.
Superstitious beliefs and practices.
Addictions amongst men and youth.
Sexual exploitation of women.
Workers and their families are not accepted by nearby villagers as they are considered outsiders.
Politicians are not concerned about them as they can’t vote and have no bargaining power.
Government officials are not concerned about them as they aren’t included in any statistics.

Children’s Issues
There are approximately 1 million children up to the age of 18 living in stone quarries. These children are either left to look after themselves or taken to the quarry to assist with the work. Children that remain at home are required to take care of their siblings, fetch water, wash clothes, guard doorless homes and prepare food and take it to their parents. Girls are forced to marry early due to the unsafe living conditions.

Once children have the energy to wield a hammer they join their parents at work in the quarry. Even though it is illegal for children to work in quarries, child labour is still a major problem amongst stone quarry communities.

© 2012 Santulan. All rights reserved. Powered By