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Israel's construction sector deadly for Arab workers

Lawyer Hadas Tagari is collecting and publishing data on the troubling number of deaths in Israel's construction sector, mainly among Arab laborers, to bring attention to the problem.
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Six construction workers died last month in Israel, bringing the number of such fatalities to 23 so far this year. The number of fatalities in 2016 totaled 49, according to data compiled by attorney Hadas Tagari. Had Tagari not rallied to the cause, few in Israel would know about the extent of the country's workplace accident problem. Each case would have continued to merit at best a short item on the radio about a nameless worker killed on a construction site.

Few Israelis, if any, know that most workplace accidents occur in the construction sector and that most of those killed or injured are Israeli Arab citizens, Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza, and a handful of migrant laborers from abroad. Almost two years ago, Tagari began collecting the names and identities of the dead, one by one, as well as the location of their fatal accidents. She documented the names of the construction companies involved and the reason for the accidents, whether negligence by employers or the systemic failure of all those tasked with supervising the construction sector and preventing workplace accidents.

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