Veolia’s racist practices in its recruitment practices
In 2010, Veolia placed a newspaper advertisement to recruit operatives for its Jerusalem Light Railway project. The advertisement was in Hebrew but the original and an English translation are supplied below.
Palestinians living in the eastern area that the JLR covers (i.e. in occupied East Jerusalem), are in any event barred from applying to operate it.
However, in its advertisement Veolia was clearly looking to go beyond excluding Palestinians from the OPT from its workforce, but also to exclude Palestinian citizens of Israel (often referred to as ‘Israeli Arabs’) – who make up approximately 20% of the population – from applying for or from being offered the posts. The evidence for this are the twin requirements stated in the advertisement (i) for linguistic competence in Hebrew to be to ‘mother tongue’ standard and (ii) for a standard record of past military/civic service.
Hebrew to mother tongue standard is a deliberate discriminatory hurdle. The advertisement could have asked for sufficient competence in Hebrew to operate trains, but instead went beyond this to send a message to would-be applicants about which racial/ethnic group is really preferred.
The requirement for a standard record of past military/civic service is also deliberately discriminatory. Palestinian citizens of Israel are not called up to serve as conscripts in the Israeli Defence Forces – so cannot be expected to meet Veolia’s requirement. The civic service alternative is also discriminatory. Civic service is almost entirely managed by bodies that direct the giving of such service within Jewish communities only.
In view of the above, public bodies must ask why and how it can allow Veolia – with its de facto ‘Palestinians need not apply’ policy – to be considered as a suitable candidate for tendering for public contracts.
Veolia ad for operators for the Jerusalem light rail (larger image available on request):
(on the picture: “The light rail opens a door for you…”)
Wanted for the light rail in Jerusalem
Control and operations workers
25 year old or older; residence in Jerusalem and the area; Hebrew at a mother tongue level, English at a 4 units level; full army service/ civic service; advantage to technological education; B level driving license with at least 2 year experience; full control of a computerized environment; no criminal record; good health; the work is in shifts, including weekends; good concentration abilities; good learning abilities; trust-worthiness; dedication; good performance under stress