Published 6 July 2006
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Work in the factories and life expectancy in Ravensbruck

Therefore, everyone did things according to their religion or what they wanted, and later we were taken on what is called "the march to slavery:" this means that we were gathered up outside and the German civilians arrived: these civilians were sent by large German firms for exanple, Siemens and Hugo Farben . Eventually all the large enterprises came to look for manual work because in fact at this time we were slaves and the German firms bought us .

The firms paid so much per person and took on the deportees in the area of work: so the SS did commerce themselves: they stayed in charge of surveillance; and the factories where the people worked paid a sum to the SS for food and maintenance of the deportees. Listen well, they did everything in their pockets because at first the eneterprises weren’t paid a lot and it was the SS who profited from these factories.

It was hot in the strain of work. When the work was hard the deportees had a life expectancy of 3 months, 6 months at the most. Where I was, you had a life expectancy of between 6 and 9 months. There were those who died before. So at the end of the war in 1945 the Germans couldn’t recruit manual labour anymore because they were being invaded from both sides. At this time they began to ask questions on the hardship experienced by people that didn’t stop exploiting us to the limits of our capabilities. Besides, in May 1945 in the camp where I was, about 1000 people were staying there. They killed about 15 people per day.