An 18-hole golf course bearing Donald Trump’s name is under construction in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Trump International Golf Club is designed by world-renowned golf course architect Gil Hanse, who was also chosen to work on the course for the 2016 Olympics. It’s one of the many multi-billion dollar projects of the Trump business empire in the Emirates, though it is reportedly being built by a separate company.
However, behind all the glitz and glamour lies an ugly reality that was recently captured on hidden cameras by HBO’s documentary television series "Vice."
Like all other mega-structures already built or underway in oil-rich Gulf countries, the new Trump project is also being built by the migrant labor force.
In a preview clip of the show, "Vice" correspondent Ben Anderson follows a busload of laborers who travel for two hours into the desert, where their living quarters are situated.
“Even by the unbelievably low-standards of Dubai, the guys living 10 to 21 to a villa are treated really, really badly,” Anderson narrates in the video. “Just outside the kitchen door was a bathroom that didn’t look fit for human beings.”
One worker told Anderson he is paid just $231 a month, while another from Pakistan expressed his wish to leave for home, but he could not because his employer company took his passport.
The UAE — known for its sky-impaling and record-breaking structures — is one of the worst countries in the world when it comes to treatment of migrant laborers and domestic helpers.
Immigrants account for more than 88.5 percent of the entire population of the Gulf state, many of them low-paid South Asian workers, according to 2011 government statistics.
While the desert country is home to luxurious artificial islands, winter ski resorts and Burj Khalifa, currently the tallest man-made structure in the world, it routinely subjects its workforce to a range of human rights abuses, including meager pay, squalid living conditions and, in some cases, physical abuse as well.