Summons for work camp
And we went singing ‘Houd er de moed maar in!’ [Keep up your spirits!]
In work camps the inmates would carry out forced labor (in contrast to extermination camps where immediate death and not labor was the objective). Inmates often died as a result of hard labor, malnourishment, and illness. Prisoners who could no longer bear the inhuman life in the camps also committed suicide. In work camps young and strong prisoners were used as slave labor, often for the large factories that were set up near those camps. Those factories were part of companies that usually supplied the army, like IG Farben, which established large production departments near Auschwitz. The working and living conditions in the work camps were often no better than those on the extermination camps. There too, the number of deaths was enormous, as a result of the often highly dangerous working conditions, poor care, and the cruel arbitrariness of the guards.