jhr Story Leads to Minimum Wage Hike in Liberia

In late May 2011, jhr trainers Aaron Leaf and Janey Llewellin organized a reporting trip for Liberian journalists to investigate working conditions at an iron ore mine in the north of the country.

Boima Boima of the New Democrat newspaper interviewing a subcontractor about wages and safety

In discussions with both workers and management, the journalists discovered that local workers were being hired as sub-contractors, on call. They had no job security, and were being paid US$3 a day. jhr-trained journalists blanketed local media with the story. Of particular note, Nat Bayjay, writing in FrontPageAfrica, linked the workers’ plight to pending legislation that proposed to raise Liberia’s minimum wage to US$6.40 a day. This article kicked off a furious debate in the Liberian House and Senate. Just two months later, the Liberian legislature had passed the new minimum wage bill. Result? In May, Liberian mine workers were being paid $3 a day. Today that is no longer legal.

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