Labor law would not have helped berry pickers

Temp agency workers in Sweden are likely to get more equal rights compared to their permanently employed colleagues, once Sweden adopts a new EU directive later this year. The directive aims to hold countries up to minimum standards, in terms of how they treat temp workers.

A new Swedish investigation into the directive recommends that Sweden draft a new law to implement the EU rule. But news agency TT reports that new rules wouldn't have helped the hundreds of Vietnamese berry pickers who were cheated out of the wages they were promised after coming to Sweden last summer. That's because their employment agency was based in Vietnam and not in the EU.

The law won't affect the vast majority of workers whose temp agencies are governed by collective bargaining agreements either, says Birgitta Nyström, who headed the investigation.

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