Embassy in Ireland warns Latvian women to be wary of job offers

Latvian citizens, especially young and unmarried women, should carefully evaluate job offers found on the Internet, the Latvian Embassy in Ireland has warned in response to increasing reports of problems.

The Dublin-based embassy is getting frequent reports from women who are being pressured to enter into fictitious marriages in exchange for the promise of a job. Some are being offered work as prostitutes, according to the Aug. 3 warning.

With the unemployment rate in Ireland now at 11.6 percent, finding work is very difficult, the embassy warned.

Since 2000, the Irish Department of Social and Family Affairs has issued more than 40,500 Personal Public Service Numbers to Latvian nationals who have moved to Ireland. The numbers, which are used in transactions between individuals and government agencies, serve as one indication of how many Latvian nationals have migrated to Ireland, even if temporarily.

The embassy’s warning names the popular Latvia-based social networking site draugiem.lv as one Internet portal where it would be wise to carefully evaluate job offers.

If an offer is received to enter into a fictitious marriage or to work as a prostitute, the embassy recommends contacting the Garda—the Irish police—on the emergency lines 999 or 112, on 1890 610 710 or on the Garda Confidential Line, 1800 666 111. Female victims of violence may contact the nongovernmental organization Ruhama on +353 1 836 0292. The embassy may be reached on +353 1 428 33 20.

Andris Straumanis is a special correspondent for and a co-founder of Latvians Online. From 2000–2012 he was editor of the website.

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