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NYU Project Violated Its Own Labor Rules

About 10,000 construction workers building New York University’s campus in Abu Dhabi worked under conditions that violated the school’s labor guidelines, according to a report released on Thursday.

Those violations included late or substandard wages, involuntary overtime and unreimbursed fees. NYU said its guidelines are intended to apply to all of its workers, but the report found that construction companies involved in the United Arab Emirates project excluded about one-third of the workforce, a group comprising mainly of short-term contractors.

“The labor guidelines were intended to ensure that all workers…received the benefits of those guidelines,” the report states. “Our investigation determined that this was not the case.”

NYU vowed to maintain strict labor practices as it developed the 3-million-square-foot campus, enforced by a set of rules written and publicly released by NYU officials.

Conducted by the investigative firm Nardello & Co., the report was commissioned by Tamkeen, an Abu Dhabi government organization that is overseeing the campus construction for NYU.

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