Romania joined the European Union in 2007 and since then the province of Ragusa has witnessed the arrival of an influx of workers from this neo-European country. In 2006 in Vittoria there were around 9000 farming workers, of whom only 36 were Romanian; in 2007 this number grew to 1166. In effect, if in a first stage the foreign labor force was predominantly of Maghreb origin, with the entrance of Romania in the European Union this has changed and Romanian is now the prevailing nationality.
The availability of a workforce at a lower price and the convenience of the residence permits have facilitated the replacement of the North African labor force with the Romanian crews. Currently, it is the latter that is mostly used in the farming sector in the greenhouses of the Fascia Trasformata (the territory between the city of Vittoria, Santa Croce Camerina and Acate).
The female labor force has first started to be employed in the greenhouses since the arrival of the Romanian community. Women work at the same pace and develop the same tasks as men. Many of these people work without contracts and once they enter the Fascia TrasformataSystem they disappear, becoming literally invisible. The word “System” indicates a circuit, a structure that works according to specific dynamics and rules, bad rules that are not written. A closed circuit from which it is truly difficult to get out: the worker´s life is defined by the same actions, that begin and end at the workplace.