Nishlija spent his vacation working in Alaska – exhausting work, but profitable (PHOTO)
Nishlija Sasa Stamenkovic (49) recently returned from Alaska, where he spent his vacation for the fourth summer in a row.
Stamenković is a microelectronics engineer by profession and is permanently employed in the City Municipality of the Red Cross, but his adventurous spirit, desire to see that part of the United States, as well as desire for additional income, motivated him to go overseas for the first time in 2018.
According to Stamenković, he learned about the agency in Belgrade that organizes the seasonal employment of our people in the fish processing factory from a friend who already worked there.
“It is a completely legal job for which a seasonal work visa was obtained at the American embassy, and a paid return ticket, accommodation and food in Alaska were obtained from the agency through which one goes to work. “People who have a permanent job and family in Serbia have an advantage when it comes to employment, because that is a guarantee to the Americans that they will return to the country after the end of the season,” Stamenković explained for the Beta agency.
He said that this summer, thousands of our people worked in one of the companies that have salmon processing plants in Alaska.
“The company I worked for organizes production for only a month and a half during the summer while spawning and salmon hunting, which suits me because I can” cover “that time with vacations and days off,” said Stamenković.
According to him, there are factories in Alaska that process seafood and several types of fish, not just salmon, and organize production throughout the year, so that some people from Serbia work in Alaska for nine months.
“There is no extremely hard physical work in fish processing factories. However, the shifts are from 12 to 6 pm and we work without a day off a week, and that is what is extremely difficult, both physically and mentally exhausting, “Stamenković pointed out.
As he said, workers from Serbia are highly valued in Alaska because they have shown that they can withstand the pace of work that is required of them.
“From the Americans to Alaska come to work primarily those originally from Mexico or Puerto Rico, however, they are not physically strong, so very often do not last the season to the end. In the factory where I worked this summer, 100 Puerto Ricans resigned “, said Stamenković.
Workers from Serbia, he added, are motivated to endure the season until the end, because the money they can earn in a few months in Alaska in Serbia cannot be done with any legal job.
“An hour of work is paid gross $ 12.36, or a net just over $ 9. Every hour of overtime work is paid 50 percent more, and overtime work is considered work longer than 40 hours a week. “In addition, all those who worked seasonally in America since 2018 received $ 3,200 from the American state, in the name of help due to the kovid epidemic,” said Stamenković.
He said that during the past four years, he also had the opportunity to visit Alaska, the place where Dillingham worked, as well as the largest city, Anchorage, which has about 250,000 inhabitants.
“Alaska is a completely wild country, perfectly clean, with untouched nature. Encounters with wild animals like bears are frequent, people are actually tenants there, someone who lives next to wild animals “, Stamenković emphasized.
He said that he is not sure that he will go to Alaska again, and he is not thinking about that when he has just returned.
“It takes me maybe two months from when I get home to forget how hard the work there is. If you ask me now if I want to go, I will say ‘I probably won’t’, but in a couple of months I may change my mind “, said Stamenković.
He added that mostly younger people, aged 30 to 40, leave Serbia for Alaska, while this year he was the oldest among our workers in the factory where he worked.
Photo: Beta / Sasa Stamenkovic
Source: BIZlife by www.bizlife.rs.
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