Unions Across the Globe
October 19, 2012
Special to LaborPress
Whether you are in France, Nigeria, Slovakia, Spain or Bangladesh, unions and their unemployed members are fighting hard against their government’s belt-tightening “austerity” wage and tax policies. They are using rallies, marches, strikes, sitdowns and other actions to demand jobs.
They are also fighting for the right to form and join unions, for freedom of speech and for a “living wage” using extraordinary actions, such as shutting down factories, holding plant managers as hostages, reducing a town’s electricity, blocking traffic and other attention-getting actions, such as hunger strikes.
Interestingly, many of these protest campaigns are led by working women, who devise special actions to dramatize their demands. In one case, the women assembled on the roof of a factory and threatened to jump off together unless the employer agreed to discuss their demands.
The increase in the protests on every continent was undoubtedly influenced by the uprisings that started in Tunisia and Egypt and now has engulfed the entire Middle East, with a civil war in Syria.