Intersectional Violence in Italy: Nigerian Woman Subjected to Violence for Asking Her Payment
Europe and Human Rights Researcher
Global Human Rights Defence
A 25-year-old woman of Nigerian origin has been slapped, punched and battered by her employer after asking for her earned salary. The woman recorded every second of the assault and published it on her social media to tell her story. She was working as a dishwasher on a beach in Calabria, Italy. When she did not receive any payment, she confronted her employer about the payment for the hours she worked. In the video she shared, the employer first verbally and then physically assaulted her by hitting her and trying to break her phone. The woman did neither go to hospital nor file any complaints, but her video went viral in Italy. The Observatory on Exploitation in Calabria (Osservatorio sullo sfruttamento in Calabria) offered trade union support to the unidentified victim. Italian Police started the investigations concerning the employer’s violence.
On the verge of the upcoming parliamentary elections on September 25, Italy is crackling with racially motivated assaults toward people of colour and migrants as discriminatory rhetoric increases. Recently, on July 29, Alika Ogorchukwu, a disabled Nigerian street vendor, has been beaten to death by an Italian. While the assault was taking place in broad daylight in the middle of the street, bystanders did not intervene, they only watched and recorded the murder. In 2018, former Minister of Interior Matteo Salvini, the leader of one of Italy’s right-wing parties, the League, explicitly adopted anti-immigrant views and stated that “we need a mass cleansing, street by street, piazza by piazza, neighbourhood by neighbourhood”.  The same year, Senegalese migrant Assane Diallo was shot ten times and killed in Milan after asking a stranger for five euros and a 28-year-old Italian man, Luca Traini, shot six African migrants while driving around on February 3, 2018.
 Embury-Dennis, Tom (2018, June 21). Italy's deputy PM Salvini called for 'mass cleansing, street by street, quarter by quarter', newly resurfaced footage reveals, Independent. Available at: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/italy-matteo-salvini-video-immigration-mass-cleansing-roma-travellers-far-right-league-party-a8409506.html
Sources and further reading:
Sky TG24 (2022, August 3). Soverato, donna denuncia: "Picchiata perché ho chiesto di essere pagata". VIDEO (Soverato, a woman complains: "Beaten because I asked to be paid".) Available at: https://tg24.sky.it/cronaca/2022/08/03/soverato-donna-picchiata-video
Mhaka, Tafi (2022, August 10). Murder of Alika Ogorchukwu: Is Europe just as racist as America?, Al Jazeera News. Available at:
Reynolds, James (2018, February 12). Italy migrants attack: Macerata shooting reveals a bitter national debate, BBC News. Available at: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-43030951
Embury-Dennis, Tom (2018, June 21). Italy's deputy PM Salvini called for 'mass cleansing, street by street, quarter by quarter', newly resurfaced footage reveals. Independent. Available at: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/italy-matteo-salvini-video-immigration-mass-cleansing-roma-travellers-far-right-league-party-a8409506.html