$37.12 donated in past month
From the Open-Publishing Calendar
From the Open-Publishing Newswire
Indybay FeatureRelated Categories: U.S. | Global Justice and Anti-Capitalism
The Scientology cult's "Sea Organization" is spreading the word through glossy ads that they need more gullible people to sign billion-year contracts and live like slaves. However, they will sometimes be allowed to wear a fancy uniform.
A recently-leaked 2009 issue of "International Scientology News" features a large advertisement recruiting for Scientology's paramilitary organization and pretend-Navy, the Sea Organization. To anyone who didn't know better (which apparently includes the 50,000 remaining Scientologists worldwide), to join the "Sea Org" is as honorable an endeavor as such legitimate public service as joining the military forces of one's own country. Those fancy uniforms must mean that the Sea Org is very important, right? Unfortunately for Scientology, being in the Sea Org is about as useless a thing as anyone can do. Moreover, it is really an intensification of Scientology brainwashing
and in many ways is even a kind of slavery
Would you be interested in working for an organization for which the
following statements are true?
- Employees are housed in compounds, behind fences with
locked gates and mounted security cameras.
- Employees are bused between the workplace and their locked
housing compound, which is too far away to walk or bike (and which
isn’t allowed anyway).
- Employees may not leave the housing compound without
- Employees are forbidden to own or use cell phones and have
no access to public telephones. If they make a call on company phones,
they must first obtain permission, schedule it, and the call is always
- Foreign employees have their passports confiscated and
locked in a company safe. US citizens who have passports also have
their passports confiscated and locked in the safe.
- Most employees routinely have expired drivers licenses as
their only form of identification (if they have even that).
- Employees are often transferred from business entity to
business entity within the organization, and very seldom with any
traditional administrative/personnel paperwork being done with the new
entity (I-9, W-4, applications, transfer papers, etc.).
- There is a whole department dedicated to the obtaining of
visas for foreign nationals, and a basic procedure to lie about the
reason for a visa, which is contrary to the actual use of the visa.
- Foreign personnel who are “out of
status” (visa expired) are sometimes transferred to other
locations and their names changed
- Employees’ normal work hours are from 8 am to 11
pm daily, seven days a week, and they are routinely kept working until
2 am or 3 am. Many times they are kept working throughout the night
with no chance of being bused back to their housing compound.
- Employees are not fed sufficiently, either because they are
forbidden a meal break, given only a few minutes to eat, or the food
provided is inadequate. Long term employees are often underweight.
- The employees are paid less than minimum wage. (At most,
$50/week. Some employees are not paid at all.)
- The employees are given little to no medical or dental care
— and only in emergency situations, if then. Many employees
have rotting teeth and haven’t seen a dentist in years.
Medical problems are often neglected or the person forbidden from
seeking medical help outside the employer (who does not provide a
doctor or nurse on site).
- The employees are not covered by any form of social welfare
or retirement benefits and often the employer has not registered the
person’s meager wages with social security.
- The employer threatens the employee with enormous debts
should they consider leaving; and has routinely billed and collected
from those who have left.
- The employer threatens the employee with throwing out the
person who will then be indigent. Most employees have no money, no
assets and long since lost contact with their families. They fear being
- The employees routinely do not have any form of bank
account for their assets, and most have no assets because they are paid
insufficiently to require a bank account. The employees are usually
paid in cash.
- The employer opens all employee personal mail and reads it
and censors it — passing on only those bits the employer
- The employees are not free to roam independently around the
local area unsupervised and unaccompanied. When allowed to roam
accompanied and supervised, they are told where they can and cannot go.
The local area they are allowed to roam in is covered by
employer’s security cameras.
- The employees are forbidden to tell others about their
living and working conditions. The employees are taught to be fearful
of those outside this employment and have been taught that law
enforcement and social services are enemies. They are taught and
practiced in how to lie about their conditions.
- At employer’s work location, there are none of
the usual Labor Law posters available for viewing of the employees.
Employees are unable to learn of their worker rights by normal means.
- Employees are forbidden to watch, and are denied access to,
televisions and newspapers. They have little to no access to
information about the world outside their work and living compounds.
- Employees are forbidden access to the Internet and email,
and are prevented from accessing the Internet.
- All sex between workers (including those married to each
other) is discouraged, and female workers who become pregnant undergo
extreme pressure and duress to get them to abort the pregnancy
— including denying them access to their husbands to discuss
- Employees who “run” are sought out and
returned with physical force and psychological coercion. Other
employees practice procedures to hunt down people who
“run”. Employees deemed “flight
risks” due to something they have said to another, are kept
under surveillance and guarded and restrained by security personnel.
- The employer maintains another compound, somewhere else,
where employees work and live on the premises, without busing. This
compound is fenced with security fencing (including razor-sharp inward-facing spikes, vibration
detectors, flood lights, cameras, and electronic notification systems),
security personnel at all gates (with guns), and it’s rare
that any employees are allowed out. Some of the employees
haven’t been out of that compound in years.
- The employer maintains a punishment work detail for those
whom it deems troublemakers. This work detail is not allowed to speak
with anyone, works a minimum of 10 hours of hard manual labor a day,
gets substandard nutrition provided for meals, and gets a maximum of 7
hours of sleep per night. The employer also maintains an
extra-punishment work detail for those who do not cooperate with the
regular punishment work detail. Those poor souls work continuously, and
get a maximum of 6 hours of sleep per night.
- Employees wear fancy pseudo-Naval uniforms for photo-ops
and special events, and follow a pretend-Naval hierarchy of "rank."
- Employer employs several thousand personnel throughout the
All these things are true of the Scientology cult's "Sea Organization"
Inward-facing spikes to prevent escape
From a 1960s Scientology magazine (including caption)