I feel safe now
Since the violence perpetrated by the Taliban has increased in the region we live in, my daughter and I came to Turkey from Afghanistan 2.5 years ago with a plan to have a better future. After a short time, we adapted to the environment we live in. I knew that I had to find a job and work in order to meet our needs. I worked as a tailor in Afghanistan for a long time. With the guidance of one of my neighbors, I started working in a textile factory in the city where I live. They paid my fee on the specified day, and I could use my leave whenever I wanted. However, Turkish employees were saying ‘You are working illegally, you have to hide when they come for inspection’. I thought that they were saying this because I was a foreigner. Due to my health problems, I went to an organization called the Refugee Support Center (MUDEM-RSC), which provides counseling services to asylum seekers and refugees. After receiving consultancy service about my health, they asked if I had a work permit and about working conditions in the factory where I worked. Upon my answers, the person working in the MUDEM-RSC office gave me the information and brochure of a website called ‘Worker Support Center’ and said that I could get consultancy support through this website. As soon as I got home, I went to the website of the Worker Support Center and made an application for information about the ‘Work Permit’ from the ‘Get Support’ option. As the website is in Persian, it was easy for me to make an application. During the day, the consultants of the Worker Support Center called me and answered all my questions. They explained in detail how to make an application for a work permit and my social rights. There were 3 other Afghan women working without a work permit like me in the factory where we were working. I shared the information I learned from the Worker Support Center with them, and we went to talk to our employer about issuing a work permit. Our employer said that he could not issue a work permit since he did not know how to issue one for foreign workers. Then I contacted the Worker Support Center again. They explained in detail to my employer how to make an application for a work permit and the sanctions for employing unregistered foreign workers.
Meanwhile, one of my colleagues had found a job in another workshop and told us that other workers would be hired. During our interview, we asked the employer if he would apply for our work permit. He said that he would apply, but he did not know how to do it. So I told him what I learned from the Worker Support Center. I told him that he could reach the Worker Support Center’s consultant if he needed it. I heard later that our employer also contacted the Worker Support Center and our work permit application was completed without any problems. Shortly after, our permits came and we started working. I am still working in the same workshop and I feel safe knowing my rights. I would like to thank MUDEM-RSC and the Worker Support Center for their support.