There are many stories about migrant workers being housed worse than animals, in unsafe and unhygienic conditions. But it is hard to grasp how bad things can be without the visual image. With phone cameras becoming ubiquitous, these images are coming out.

The first is a video first posted on  The Online Citizen, showing utterly disgusting conditions for Chinese workers. The video was actually made by workers themselves in 2008/2009, after they mentioned their housing issues to HOME and TWC2 volunteers Stephanie and Patrick who had been trying to help them with their salary dispute with their employers. Where was this rat-hole? It was actually the basement of a luxury condominium in the Cairnhill district, developed by SC Global.

The second video, from 2008, is (relatively) less unspeakable, but still unacceptably cramped. It was a shophouse dormitory in Geylang where workers from Xuyi Construction (then building Marina Bay Sands, among other projects) were housed. The workers were at the time also up in arms over unpaid salaries.

The third video is from Tiong Seng Contractors Pte Ltd, showing the container housing they built for their workers in the Carinhill area. While the common facilities look good, the sleeping area is still cramped, and ventilation and hygiene questions still arise. In any case, the video was shot when the facilities were brand new, what condition it now is (e.g. does it leak when it rains? How hot does it get on a hot day?) is a separate matter.