Skip to content. | Skip to navigation

Sections
You are here: Home / Struggles / Mall of Shame

Mall of Shame

A conflict concerning outstanding wages for construction workers of the "Mall of Berlin".

Deutsch | English | Română | Castellano | Svenska | Français | Ελληνικά

 

Mall of Shame - built on exploitation

For the construction of the shopping and residential complex “Mall of Berlin”, which had its grand opening in the autumn of 2014, in spite of unfinished building sites and faulty fire safety, various subcontracting companies let hundreds of migrant workers from Romania toil for ten hours a day for five or six euros an hour, according to workers from this construction site. In the end, not even this illegally low wage was paid to the employees in full.

One of the construction workers explains: “We were not only denied our wages: we were threatened on multiple occasions, including threats of violence, and our lack of German-language skills was exploited by our employers. We were denied written employment contracts and were provided with completely inadequate and exorbitantly priced sleeping quarters, or no accommodation at all.” At many construction sites in Germany, such shocking exploitation and degrading treatment seems to be business as usual. What’s new is that now the cheated workers are fighting back! A group of these workers have gotten organized in the FAU Berlin, to fight for the wages they are owed.

Another colleague says: ”I had two goals when we started the protests: Firstly, I wanted to fight for our dignity, secondly, I wanted to fight for our money.” He pauses. ”The first, we’ve already achieved.” With daily rallies and a vocal demonstration before Christmas 2014, the base union FAU made the ”Mall of Shame” into a symbol for the exploitation of migrant workers from EU countries, and, as the newspaper Märkische Allgemeine writes at the end of January, ”a subject of the news commentary of all Berlin media”.

The construction of the ”Mall of Berlin” cost about one billion Euros, according to the Berlin-Brandenburg broadcasting network rbb. It was commissioned by HGHI Leipziger Platz GmbH, and the completion was done by the consortium ”Arbeitsgemeinschaft Leipziger Platz No. 12” under the management of Fettchenhauer Controlling und Logistic GmbH, which has since declared bankruptcy. Directly responsible for the wage sham are the subcontractors Metatec-Fundus GmbH & Co. KG from Berlin-Kreuzberg, and openmallmaster GmbH from Frankfurt am Main, but the main responsibility for the conditions at the construction site lies with the consortium and finally with the commissioner.

This responsibility is not only a moral responsibility, but a responsibility dictated by law. ”A contractor who commissions work or services from another contractor, is liable for the obligations of this contractor ... for the payment of the minimum wage to employees ... as a bondsman.”

In 2015 and 2016 most of the lawsuits against the subcontractors were successful, but - as was to be expected - the questionable subcontractors declared bankruptcy or went underground. Now in 2017, the Romanian construction workers, with support of FAU Berlin, have proceeded to file lawsuits against the responsible commissioner, Harald Huth’s Leipziger Platz GmbH & Co. KG.

FAU Berlin will continue the fight, and the Romanian workers who organized themselves in FAU Berlin are willing to go through all court instances if necessary, to set a precedent that will be beneficial for other workers. We keep up our challenge against shameless exploitation and those who profit from it.

If you want to support the costly legal procedures, please donate: Donation info.

Latest News

[Mall of Shame] Demonstration 25.4.

(When:: Apr 25, 2015 12:00 PMWhere: Leipziger…)

6 Monate später noch immer kein Lohn. Wir rufen euch deshalb alle dazu auf, die Forderung der Arbeiter solidarisch zu unterstützen und den Protest gegen… » Read on

Read More…

6 Monate später immer noch kein Lohn: Ergebnisse der letzten Gütetermine bei der "Mall of Shame"

(Apr 23, 2015)
6 Monate später immer noch kein Lohn: Ergebnisse der letzten Gütetermine bei der "Mall of Shame"

Fazit: Ein weiteres Versäumnisurteil gegen eines der Mall-Subunternehmen, und Kammertermine im Juli und Oktober. … » Read on

Read More…

[Mall of Shame] Demonstration 25.4

(Apr 15, 2015)
[Mall of Shame] Demonstration 25.4

6 months later, wages still not paid. We are therefore calling you, to support the workers´ demands and join us in solidarity to decisively bring this… » Read on

Read More…

Berliner Luxus-Mall: Rumänische Bauarbeiter klagen Lohn ein

(Apr 10, 2015)
 Berliner Luxus-Mall: Rumänische Bauarbeiter klagen Lohn ein

Hunderte Rumänen schufteten mit beim Aufbau von Berlins neuestem Einkaufszentrum, viele fühlen sich um einen großen Teil ihres Lohns betrogen. Ein Gericht… » Read on

Read More…

[Mall of Shame] Zwischensieg bei Klagen

(Apr 10, 2015)

Erste Löhne durch Versäumnisurteil in Aussicht. Basisgewerkschaft sieht sich bestätigt.… » Read on

Read More…

[Mall of Shame] Erste Klagen zur Güte verhandelt

(Apr 10, 2015)
[Mall of Shame] Erste Klagen zur Güte verhandelt

Am heutigen Freitag, den 10. April, wurden vor dem Arbeitsgericht Berlin die Klagen von zwei Bauarbeitern der Mall of Berlin verhandelt, die dort um ihren… » Read on

Read More…

Etappensieg für Bauarbeiter der "Mall of Berlin"

(Apr 10, 2015)
Etappensieg für Bauarbeiter der "Mall of Berlin"

Im Streit über ausstehende Löhne von Bauarbeitern beim Bau des Einkaufszentrums "Mall of Berlin" haben zwei Beschäftigte einen Etappensieg errungen.… » Read on

Read More…

Mall of Berlin – Streit um Löhne vor Gericht

(Apr 06, 2015)
Mall of Berlin – Streit um Löhne vor Gericht

Prestigeobjekt Mall of Berlin: Das Arbeitsgericht Berlin verhandelt in dieser Woche erste Klagen von rumänischen Bauarbeitern. Bei der Errichtung der… » Read on

Read More…

Bauarbeiter klagen Lohn ein

(Mar 31, 2015)
Bauarbeiter klagen Lohn ein

Radikale Gewerkschaft unterstützt geprellte Bauarbeiter des Einkaufstempels Mall of Berlin … » Read on

Read More…

Mall of Berlin: Klage gegen zwei Subunternehmer

(Mar 30, 2015)
Mall of Berlin: Klage gegen zwei Subunternehmer

Artikel in der Immobilien Zeitung… » Read on

Read More…

[Mall of Shame] Offener Brief an Arbeitssenatorin

(Mar 26, 2015)

Gewerkschaft reicht Lohnklagen vor Gericht ein und übermittelt offenen Brief an Arbeitssenatorin.… » Read on

Read More…

[Mall of Shame] Missstände ohne Konsequenzen?

(Mar 26, 2015)
[Mall of Shame] Missstände ohne Konsequenzen?

Offener Brief an die Arbeitssenatorin Dilek Kolat (SPD): Sehr geehrte Frau Kolat, zugegeben, offene Briefe sind ein zahnloses Mittel, um RepräsentantInnen… » Read on

Read More…

[Mall of Shame] Neuigkeiten

(Mar 16, 2015)

+++ Klagen eingereicht +++ Kundgebung vor Metatec in Kreuzberg +++ Erneute Demo angedacht +++ Mall-Anwalt will Namen unserer Anmelder +++ BSS-Prozess in… » Read on

Read More…

Mall of Shame | Die Chronik

(Mar 16, 2015)

Die Chronik zum Lohnkampf an der Mall of Berlin… » Read on

Read More…

Mall of Shame ...

(Mar 07, 2015)
Mall of Shame ...

Protest vor der Mall of Berlin geht weiter: Sieben Arbeiter kämpfen weiter für ihren Lohn.… » Read on

Read More…

Akteure im Fall Mall of Shame

Akteure  im Fall Mall of Shame

Stronger together

Click here to get to the FAU Berlin's English membership formThe FAU Berlin is an independent grassroots union. It is part of the German Free Workers' Union (FAU) federation. Join us, take part, get active.

#coronafaq

COVID-19 FAQ

Intro and advice
Introductory seminar: FAU – How does it work? - Cancelled until further notice.
Open FAU office: Cancelled until further notice.
union help desk: always on the 2. and 4. Friday of the month, 6:30 – 7:30 PM.
Please read first!
Tenant rights help desk: Cancelled until further notice.
Advice for worker and business collectives: See the advice page (german) of the union coop // federation.
Follow us on...
Donations welcome

Name: Allgemeines Syndikat Berlin
IBAN: DE45 1605 0000 3703 0017 11
BIC: WELA DE D1 PMB
Reason for payment: Donation