MAY DAY 2021 – working people and the global pandemic

The International League of Peoples Struggles Workers’ Commission joins the working class across the world in marking this year’s International Labour Day. We give our warmest working-class solidarity to the workers and oppressed people who continue to persist and resist amid the worsening economic crisis marked by the global pandemic.

The World Health Organization reports that global cases of infection have surpassed 142 million and global deaths from the new coronavirus are more than 3 million. Over 800 million doses of vaccine have been administered. Over 2.5 million of the deaths have been in the Americas and Europe. Many countries are experiencing a fourth surge of the pandemic, with the rate of infection out of control and health systems overwhelmed.

For decades now, neoliberal globalization has left the public healthcare system of countries in a state of neglect due to privatization and austerity measures. Due to the Great Lockdown in 2020, global economic production sharply fell, while there is also a decline in consumption, slowing down capitalist accumulation.

The capitalists have responded by flooding the global economy with cash, most of which has flowed into speculative investments in shares and residential housing. Governments used taxpayers’ money through public debt to bailout capitalists through rescue packages and stimulus plans. But these mere emergency measures, instead of resolving the crisis, further aggravate the contradictions of capitalism.

Worsening condition of workers

Global unemployment has already risen by 255 million jobs lost, estimated by the International Labor Organization, worse than the 2009 financial crisis with 22 million job losses.  However, the labor situation is no different than it was before the spread of the virus. Workers are suffering from wage cuts, unemployment, indebtedness, homelessness, lack of access to social services, and rising cost of living.

While there is massive and widespread destruction of productive forces on one hand, there is further concentration of capitalist accumulation on the other. Under capitalism a handful of exceptionally rich and powerful states are plundering the whole world. While billions of people suffered in the pandemic, capitalism singled out the rich and 493 new billionaires were created with a total wealth of over US$2 trillion.

Leading industrial countries are currently incurring massive public debt on top of an already alarming public debt prior to the pandemic. To offset the pandemic’s economic toll, the total global debt total reached an all-time high of $281 trillion by the end of 2020, or more than 355 per cent of global GDP, according to the Institute of International Finance.

In order to repay their debts, capitalists will focus on break-neck extraction of super profits through austerity measures. Anti-worker policies such as race-to-the-bottom wages and flexible labour arrangements will be intensified especially in the Global South.

Economic crisis leads to political crisis

From being a health crisis, the situation brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic has rapidly developed into a political crisis. More and more get infected and die. Many people suffer from hunger, disease and other hardships.

Right-wing governments in different countries exploited the Covid-19 crisis to further accumulate authoritarian powers and impose more draconian measures. Overly restrictive rules on travel and work were coupled with heavy-handed use of military and police to enforce people’s compliance to public heath measures.

As such, democratic struggles, strikes and protests have erupted around the world in Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Hong Kong, Lebanon, Venezuela, Syria, Belgium, and many other places. Trade union leaders, workers and activists at the forefront of the struggle are being red-tagged, harassed, arbitrarily arrested and detained, and in some cases, killed by state forces. Despite these attacks, workers remain steadfast in their struggles for secure jobs and good incomes. Capitalists and governments must be held accountable for their negligence of workers’ rights.

To overcome the pandemic, workers and people need to stand up and act collectively. Unions must continue to demand that workers be paid compensation to cover their cost of living affected by the pandemic. Workers must demand safety measures in workplaces to protect them against Covid-19 infections. Short-term contractual workers must demand assurances of continued work and job security. Workers must defend their right to unionize, and demand that the capitalists heed their calls.

This year, as we mark the 150th year of the historic Paris Commune, the international working class must grasp the basic lesson that the key task of emancipation is to smash the bureaucratic-military machine of the reactionaries and to replace it with a workers’ and people’s democratic government.

The entire people must reject the “new normal” that is mere continuation of the old capitalist system that paved way to the current crisis we are now facing. The working people, together with all oppressed groups from all over the world, must intensify their struggles for a new society where justice, democracy and freedom are the norms.

Working Class Response

  • Global free COVID-19 vaccination for all
  • End trade union repression – extend workers’ rights
  • Expand public sector health services
  • Increase national minimum wages everywhere
  • Secure, quality jobs – end contractualization
  • National industrial development – end reliance on global supply chains
  • Radical action on global warming and ecological sustainability
  • No war.

Our answers must be democratic, ecological, socialist. There is no time to lose.

Authorised by WORKINS (Workers International Struggle Initiatives) and ILPS Workers Commission (International League of Peoples Struggles), May 1, 2021. https://ilps.info

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April 28 – World Day for Safety and Health at Work, Workers’ Memorial Day

This day is our opportunity to reflect on how to prevent work-related occupational diseases, deaths, injuries, and illnesses. It is also a day to remember those that have died from a work-related injury or illness.

Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, 2.78 million people were dying each year from work-related illness and injury. But more than one year into the global health crisis, working people are experiencing the worst workplace conditions, far from safety.

The World Health Organization reports that global cases of COVID-19 infection have surpassed 142 million and global deaths from the new coronavirus are more than 3 million. One health worker dies from Covid-19 every 30 minutes. The world is experiencing a fourth surge of the pandemic, with the rate of infection out of control and health systems overwhelmed, while only over 800 million doses of vaccine have been administered.

The immeasurable grief at the loss of lives, the huge losses of jobs, the great hunger at the loss of income, the unfair distribution of personal protective equipment and vaccines hit the working classes and poor the most. The safety and lives of workers were put at risk to revive receding economies.

All this on top of the danger of workplace fires, building collapses, dangerous chemicals, asbestos, moving vehicles, electric shock, repetitive strain injuries, and workplace discrimination and bullying which workers have been suffering for decades.

All the while global warming and climate change are causing greater damage through storms, fires, floods and deep changes to ecosystems. Heat at work due to global warming is a growing workplace hazard.

These workplace hazards, now worsened by the pandemic, reveal that capitalism and imperialism work by exploiting and oppressing the great majority of the world’s peoples. It is the greed for profits of capitalism that puts working people at risk.

Capitalist employers and governments must be held accountable for their negligence. The imposition of neoliberal policies, especially in third-world countries, including privatization of basic social services, has led to the lack of access to health for billions of working people.

The finance capitalists who created the Great Recession in 2008-09 are still in charge today. They have greatly enriched themselves amid the pandemic. They are determined to repress wages and cut public services in the coming years. Government debt will be their weapon, both in rich and poor countries. Their goal is higher profits, their policy will be austerity.

The only answer to these workplace dangers is to organise, resist and to aim to eventually take control of the workplace and the whole economy so that the elimination of these dangers is the priority, not the profits of the capitalists.

The International League of Peoples Struggles Workers’ Commission urges workers everywhere to join their trade unions, to make them democratic, and to deepen their understanding of how capitalism and imperialism works against the great majority of the people everywhere.

Working Class Response

  • Free rapid COVID-19 vaccination for all workers everywhere
  • Personal Protective Equipment for all workers who require it
  • Elected Workplace Health & Safety Committees
  • Full trade union rights to organise and collectively bargain
  • End trade union repression!
  • National industrial development – end reliance on global supply chains
  • Radical action on global warming and ecological sustainability
  • No War!

Workers’ safety and health is a fundamental right!

Save workers’ lives!

Decent compensation for worker victims of occupational incidents!

Authorised by WORKINS (Workers international Struggle Initiatives) and ILPS Workers Commission (International League of Peoples Struggles), April 28, 2021. https://workins.wordpress.com https://ilps.info

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Meet the just demands of the 210 workers of Industries Florenzi SA of CV in San Salvador, El Salvador! Support the Hunger Strikers!

Solidarity Statement

Workers International Struggle Initiatives, the initiative of Commission 5 of the International League of Peoples Struggles, salutes the 196 women and 14 men employed at Industries Florenzi S.A. of C.V. who have been occupying their factory since July 8, 2020, to protect their jobs, wages and social security rights, and some of whom launched a hunger strike on January 7, 2021.

The company used the Compulsory COVID-19 Lockdown announced on March 19, 2020, to stop paying wages and stop remitting social security payments. On July 1 the company announced the closure of the factory and termination of all the workers.

WORKINS fully supports the demands of the Industries Florenza S.A. of C.V. workers which they launched on January 7, 2021, their “Day of struggle and solidarity with the Women Organized in Resistance of Florenzi”.

  1. The payment of 100 % of the unpaid wages, overtime, holidays, Christmas bonus, bonds and other benefits owed by the Company
  2. Judicial action against Sergio Pineda for violation of the labor law and retention of social security remittances
  3. The judges of the first, second, third, fourth and fifth labor courts should quickly issue preventive measures to bring justice for the terminated workers
  4. Stop the harassment by the Civil National Police, who should be protecting rather than pursuing the occupying workers.
  5. Remove Rolando Castro as Secretary of Labor for not acting on behalf of the workers, Instead he has taken the side of management in its illegal closure of Industries Florenzi S.A of C.V and supported the suspension of contracts and closure of many other companies led to massive dismissals.
  6. Condemn the Salvadoran State for abandoning 210 workers, mostly women, to the loss of their right to employment, to health, to housing, to social security, to a violence-free life for women, to adequate nutrition, to freedom of association, to the protection of the family, to a worthy life despite its duty under Art.1 of the Constitution that “El Salvador recognizes after the human being as the origin and the end of the activity of the State, which is organized for the attainment of the justice, of the juridical safety and of the common good. (…) and under Art. 2, that “Every person has right to life, to physical and moral integrity, to freedom, to safety, to work, to property and possessions, and to be protected in the conservation and defense of these same rights”.
  7. We request the trade union and social organizations:
  8. To distribute by all available means bulletins, posters or other types of propaganda that expresses solidarity with the workers and workers of Florenzi on hunger strike.
  9. To organize actions or to send solidarity notes to the different human rights organizations in El Salvador, asking for the prompt solution to these demands.
  10. Use our email address: comunicacionescss@gmail.com.
  11. Organize donations of money, of supplies, mats, water.
  12. Hold media conferences or other actions to show their solidarity.
  13. To visit the workers in the factory in person.

ILPS Commission 5 on Workers Concerns and WORKINS calls on its network and supporters to:

  • publicise the struggle of the Industries Florenza workers in El Salvador;
  • send solidarity messages to the workers at comunicacionescss@gmail.com
  • protest to the Government of El Salvador at its treatment of the workers. Write to President Nayib Bukele at oirmigob@gobernacion.gob.sv
  • mobilise any material support possible for the factory occupation and the hunger strikers.
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Workers and the Global Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Global impact on workers

ILO data up to May 17, 2020, shows that prospects for the second quarter of 2020 remain dire, with a projected decline in working hours of around 10.7 per cent relative to the last quarter of 2019, which is equivalent to 305 million full-time jobs (assuming a 48-hour working week and using the updated baseline). From a regional perspective, the Americas (13.1 per cent) and Europe and Central Asia (12.9 per cent) present the largest losses in hours worked.
The biggest impact has been on young workers and women workers, who are concentrated in the informal sector, hospitality, retail and the textile, garments and shoes sectors.
As well, both technical and vocational education and training (TVET) and on the job training are suffering massive disruption. In a recent ILO–UNESCO–World Bank joint survey, around 98 per cent of respondents reported a complete or partial closure of technical and vocational schools and training centres. Although over two-thirds of training is now being provided at distance, often online, few low-income countries have actually made that transition.

The pandemic is far from over, with much evidence now that the rate of infection and the death toll are surging through at least to the end of 2020. On July 5, 2020, after six months of the pandemic, there are 11.1 million cases, and 527,800 deaths. One credible projection is for a total death toll of 25 million even if all countries imposed physical distancing regimes for their entire populations.

The broad failure of most responses in both rich and poor countries demonstrates that there is a role for better social and political leadership from the workers movement.

Our urgent demands
Health
• Free Mass testing for COVID-19 for the whole population, with paid sick leave for all those requiring hospitalisation, quarantine or self-isolation, and free hospital treatment as required.
• Mandatory COVID-19 containment regime at workplaces, with provision of sanitiser, masks and proper physical distancing, and provision of immediate free healthcare to any sick worker.
• Free vaccination for all workers and the entire population when a safe, effective COVID-19 vaccine is found.
• All health sector workers should receive a significant real wage increase.

Workers’ Rights
• All workers must be free to form trade unions to engage in worker education and collective bargaining with employers, industries and governments, in accordance with ILO Conventions 87 and 98.

Incomes
• All workers, including migrant workers, must be paid a living minimum wage plus any increase that they can achieve through collective bargaining. If their industries are closed as part of COVID-19 health measures, they must continue to receive the living minimum wage. Informal Sector workers must also receive the living minimum wage if their sector is closed during the pandemic.
• All unpaid wages from the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic must be paid.
Job Security
• All workers must remain connected to their employers during the pandemic, even if there are periods of no work or reduced work.
• In the economic recovery period, new industries must provide regular secure jobs rather than precarious, short-term contractual or contract or traineeship jobs.

Government
• Suspension of negotiations in all World Trade Organisation and other bilateral and regional trade agreements, except for reviewing all clauses that would impede rapid provision of medicines, medical equipment and vaccines to address the COVID-19 pandemic, especially a review of the WTO TRIPS Agreement.
• Government to negotiate with trade unions and employers to rapidly restore lost jobs and to create new industries based on the public sector democratically meeting profound social needs for education and training, health, housing, aged care, renewable energy and sustainable transport systems.
• Education, including vocational education, must be met by democratic public sector institutions aiming to recover the skills and future prospects of the huge numbers of young people and women who have been dislocated in the COVID-19 pandemic.
• Shift economic strategy to national control and development of resources.
Finance
• In the short-term, governments must innovate to finance the huge spending required to maintain life and recover economic and social stability during this pandemic, including closure of tax havens and tax loopholes for the wealthy, calling on IMF Special Drawing Rights, cancelling all debt and debt repayments from poor countries until the pandemic is over, and where feasible, borrowing from the public.
• In particular, the WHO call for a global cooperative program to find, produce and distribute a safe effective vaccine to everyone must be financed by the rich countries to ensure that all countries, even the poorest, can overcome the pandemic.
• Economic recovery must include everyone, and will not be possible unless the health, incomes and job security of all workers are guaranteed.

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Les travailleurs s’unissent pour revendiquer les droits à la santé, à la sécurité et à la sécurité de l’emploi dans le cadre de la pandémie de COVID-19! Changons de système! Battons pour un avenir socialiste!

Cette fête du travail ne ressemble à aucune autre de l’histoire récente. En cette période de pandémie de COVID-19, les principales préoccupations des travailleurs sont la santé, l’alimentation, les revenus et la sécurité de l’emploi. Chaque pays est confronté à une crise sanitaire et économique parce que chaque pays, à l’exception de Cuba, a réduit ses budgets de santé, réduit ses impôts sur les sociétés, privatisé des biens publics essentiels comme les hôpitaux et réduit les droits des travailleurs. Il y a un besoin très urgent de mettre les gens avant le profit, de mettre les travailleurs sous contrôle. Il y aura une énorme lutte dans le monde pour ce faire.

Nous saluons les travailleurs du monde – les travailleurs de première ligne, les syndicalistes et les défenseurs – qui sont à l’avant-garde des efforts pour répondre à COVID-19. Nous rendons hommage à tous les martyrs de la classe ouvrière qui ont consacré leur vie au service du peuple.

Les travailleurs exigent une refonte totale des réponses mondiales et nationales à la pandémie, exhortant les États à donner la priorité à la santé publique et aux besoins et services de base par rapport aux bénéfices des entreprises et aux plans de sauvetage.

L’attaque de la pandémie de COVID-19 a conduit à des crises économiques et sanitaires à grande échelle, et les travailleurs ont ressenti le poids de ces retombées. Bon nombre des mécanismes mis en place pour empêcher la propagation du virus sont inadéquats et même contre-productifs.

L’administration Trump, par exemple, a investi des milliards de dollars dans le renflouement d’entreprises pour des entreprises géantes qui ont licencié des travailleurs, échappé aux impôts et fait pression contre les lois favorables au travail. Les citoyens de nombreux pays sont menacés par des fonctionnaires gouvernementaux corrompus et incompétents, comme le régime de Bolsonaro au Brésil, où les efforts pour contenir le COVID-19 sont marqués par le déni, l’inaction et les retards. Plusieurs gouvernements se précipitent pour rouvrir les entreprises afin de « sauver l’économie », malgré l’avis des experts selon lequel l’ouverture trop précoce d’entreprises pourrait entraîner une deuxième vague d’infections. D’autres, comme le régime de Duterte aux Philippines, ont utilisé COVID-19 comme prétexte pour accroître la militarisation et la centralisation du pouvoir entre les mains du gouvernement national.

Dans l’ensemble, la plupart des États n’ont pas réussi à résoudre le sort de la majorité et des secteurs les plus vulnérables de leur pays, qui n’ont pas accès aux besoins de base tels que la nourriture et les services de santé pendant les quarantaines communautaires.

Il y a plus de 3 millions de cas confirmés et plus de 200 000 décès dus au COVID-19. Beaucoup sont issus de familles de la classe ouvrière qui n’avaient pas immédiatement accès aux tests et traitements. Que ce soit dans le secteur de la santé ou dans d’autres industries essentielles telles que l’alimentation, la livraison et les services publics de base, les employés peinent à répondre aux exigences de leur emploi malgré une protection personnelle insuffisante et une charge de travail accrue.

Bien que des règles strictes de quarantaine aient été appliquées dans la plupart des pays, de nombreuses grandes entreprises, en particulier celles qui sont impliquées dans les biens et services exportés, continuent leurs activités. De nombreux travailleurs de secteurs extérieurs aux secteurs médical, alimentaire et vital ont été contraints de travailler et se sont vu refuser l’équipement de protection et l’accès aux soins médicaux.

De nombreux travailleurs ont également été abandonnés par leurs employeurs, notamment des travailleurs migrants, des travailleurs de la construction et des marins. Ils ont été laissés sur le lieu de travail sans moyens adéquats pour la nourriture et les besoins de base et sans accès aux traitements pour ceux qui ont été infectés par COVID-19.

Des dizaines de millions de travailleurs souffrent de licenciements sans accès à la protection sociale.

Les travailleurs de contrats à court terme, les travailleurs informels et les travailleurs agricoles se sont retrouvés sans revenu, nourriture et autres besoins de base tout en vivant dans des conditions de quarantaine.

Cette grave crise sanitaire et économique exige des mesures radicales. Nous exigeons des gouvernements qu’ils renforcent les systèmes de santé nationaux et communautaires en effectuant des tests de masse, en construisant les installations médicales nécessaires et en garantissant l’accès aux soins de santé pour tous.

Nous exigeons que les pays réorientent les fonds publics vers la santé publique et créent des emplois pour l’économie réelle, au lieu de renflouer les entreprises. Nous demandons une aide inconditionnelle et l’annulation de la dette publique envers les institutions financières étrangères au milieu de cette crise mondiale sans précédent. Nous nous opposons à l’octroi de nouveaux prêts onéreux qui alourdiront davantage les pays envers le FMI, la Banque mondiale et d’autres banques mondiales.

Nous appelons les gouvernements à apporter un soulagement à court terme et à long terme pour mettre en échec les politiques économiques néolibérales et reconstruire les économies afin qu’elles deviennent plus autosuffisantes et durables, stimulées par la production nationale et le commerce mutuellement bénéfique.

La crise nous enseigne que des changements systémiques doivent être mis en place pour créer des emplois après une récession mondiale anticipée qui menace de mettre des millions de travailleurs au chômage et de soumettre davantage de travailleurs à la pauvreté.

Tout en appelant à des secours immédiats, nous devons éduquer les gens sur la nécessité de transformer le système économique mondial. C’est le moment de montrer que le socialisme est toujours le système économique à long terme le plus viable.

Montrons que malgré la pandémie, nous continuerons de nous battre. Les travailleurs du monde s’unissent! Construisons un avenir socialiste!

 

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Workers unite to assert rights to health, safety, and job security amid COVID-19 pandemic! Change the system! Fight for a socialist future!

This Labor Day is unlike any in recent history. At this time of the COVID-19 pandemic, the working peoples’ primary concerns are health, food, income and job security. Every country is facing a health and economic crisis because every country apart from Cuba has been cutting health budgets, cutting corporate taxes,privatizing vital public assets like hospitals, and cutting workers’ rights. There is a very urgent need to put people before profit, to put workers in control. There will be a huge struggle world-wide to do this.
We salute the workers of the world—the frontliners, unionists, and advocates—who are at the forefront of efforts to respond to COVID-19. We pay tribute to all martyrs of the working class who have dedicated their lives in the service of the people.
Workers demand a total overhaul of global and country-level responses to the pandemic, urging states to prioritize public health and basic needs and services over corporate profit and bailouts.
The onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic has led to economic and health crises on a massive scale, and workers have felt the brunt of this fallout. Many of the mechanisms instituted to prevent the spread of the virus are inadequate and even counterproductive.
The Trump administration, for instance, has channeled billions of dollars into corporate bailouts for giant companies that have laid off workers, evaded taxes, and lobbied against pro-labor laws. Citizens of many countries are endangered by corrupt and incompetent government officials, such as the Bolsonaro regime in Brazil, where efforts to contain COVID-19 are marked by denial, inaction, and delay. Several governments are
rushing to reopen businesses in order to “save the economy,” regardless of advice from experts that opening businesses too soon may lead to a second wave of infections. Others, such as the Duterte regime in the Philippines, have used COVID-19 as a pretext for increased militarization and centralization of power in the hands of the national government.
Overall, most states have outright failed to address the plight of the majority and most vulnerable sectors in their countries, who do not have access to basic needs such as food and health services during community quarantines.
There are over 3 million confirmed cases and over 200,000 deaths due to COVID-19. Many are from working class families who had no immediate access to testing and treatment. Whether in the health sector or in other essential industries such as food, delivery, and basic utilities, employees struggle to meet the demands of their jobs despite insufficient personal protection and increased workloads.
While strict quarantine rules have been applied in most countries, many large companies especially those involved in exported goods and services still continue operations. Many workers from sectors outside medical, food and vital industries have been forced to work and denied protective equipment and access to medical
treatment.
Many workers were also abandoned by their employers, including migrant workers, construction workers, and seafarers. They were left on the work site without adequate means for food and basic needs and access to treatment for those who got infected with COVID-19.
Tens of millions of workers are suffering from layoffs without access to social protection.
Short-term contractuals, informal workers, and agricultural workers have been left without income, food, and other basic needs while living in quarantine conditions.
This grave health and economic crisis demands radical measures. We demand that governments strengthen national and community-level health care systems by providing mass testing, building necessary medical facilities, and ensuring access to health care for all.
We demand that countries re-channel public funds towards public health and creating jobs for the real economy, instead of bailing out corporations. We call for unconditional aid and the cancellation of government debt to foreign financial institutions in the middle of this unprecedented global crisis. We oppose laying-out new onerous loans that will put countries deeper into debt to the IMF and World Bank and other global banks.
We call on governments to provide relief in the short-term, and in the long-term to junk neoliberal economic policies and rebuild economies to become more self-sufficient and sustainable, boosted by domestic production and mutually beneficial trade.
The crisis is teaching us that systemic changes must be put in place to create jobs after an anticipated global recession which threatens to put millions of workers out of jobs, and to subject more working people to poverty.
While calling for immediate relief, we must educate people on the need to transform the global economic system. This is the time to show that socialism is still the most viable long-term economic system.
Let us show that despite the pandemic, we will continue to fight. Workers of the world unite! Let us build a socialist future!
Call for Action
On this historic Labor Day, workers worldwide stand in solidarity to assert our right to public health, food, and secure jobs. We call for the following urgent demands:
Guaranteed incomes and livelihood even under quarantine
Mass testing and treatment for all
No bailouts for big corporations, aid for working people
Social protection for farmers, workers, migrants and toiling masses
Respect for democratic and human rights
Stand in solidarity with workers around the world this May Day! While traditional mass gatherings may not be possible due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we can conduct different forms of protest actions and have a shared platform where we can show the strength of our collective action.
This May 1, we call on everyone to show their solidarity with the workers and people of all countries by posting any form of action, even home-based, on social media platforms. Put on a do-it-yourself red mask or a red arm band, and hold up a sign, write a post, or tag the post with demands, and use the hashtag:
#PublicHealthNotProfit
Authorised by WORKINS (Workers international Struggle Initiatives) and ILPS Workers Commission (International League of Peoples Struggles) Commission 5, May 1, 2020. https://workins.wordpress.com http://ilps.info
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May Day 2019 – Educate, Organise and Mobilise for Workers’ Rights as capitalism crashes into deeper crisis!

May 1, 2019

Let’s work to change the system itself!

Workers International Struggle Initiatives (WORKINS) and the trade union section of the International League of Peoples Struggles call for an anti-imperialist united front to:

  • struggle to lift minimum wages everywhere;
  • improve wages and working conditions;
  • fiercely resist the privatization drive, and the intense attack on public services, pensions, and workers’ rights in all countries by big finance capital.
  • uphold migrant and refugee rights against the racist fascist movements
  • replace neo-liberal capitalism with socialist alternatives.

We must educate and mobilize a global workers’ movement for democratic pro-people transformation of our economies. Otherwise the big capitalists will use the deepening crisis to foment racist divisions among workers and peoples to enable ever worse austerity and repression of democratic rights.

Expand economic struggles and turn them into political struggles

This is the way to expand and strengthen the trade union movement. Socialism for our times is an answer to the shocking racism being promoted by big capitalists, especially in Europe and the USA. The massive Indian trade union general strike in January 9-10, 2019, to increase the minimum wages, oppose a neo-liberal labor code and oppose privatisation shows what can be done.

The ‘yellow vests’ protest movement against austerity in France has been divided by the use of violent provocateurs and racists, but the progressive majority continues to assert its strong opposition to President Macron’s neo-liberal formulas.

The capitalists are pressing down wages, promoting labor ‘flexibility’, and stealing workers’ social benefits – so our answer must be to strengthen the workers’ and people’s struggle to higher wages, regular jobs, better working conditions and genuine social change.

The Great Recession of 2008-09 is far from over, nor is the global economy experiencing ‘recovery’. It is an ongoing global depression, with Central Banks reversing recent moves to ‘normalize’ credit markets as a new global slowdown emerges. Big finance capital fears another big crash.

With the end of massive money printing by the US Treasury and Federal Reserve, and the tailing off of money printing by the European Central Bank, money flowed back from Latin America into the USA and the corrupt rightwing oligarchs struck down the pro-worker governments of Brazil, Argentina and Ecuador. Venezuela was also hit by economic crisis and the US is openly backing a coup attempt, which the workers of Venezuela are successfully blocking.

As well, the global ecological crisis, as now manifest in global coral bleaching and ever more massive storms and floods, continues to create climate refugees, cause deaths, and threaten the lives of hundreds of millions of people now and the prospects for future generations.

The poor countries, especially in Asia and Africa, continue to experience chronic high unemployment and under-employment. Low value-adding export sectors make them profoundly dependent on external conditions. Even Asia’s richest economy, Japan, is struggling to break out of three decades of recession and deflation through the neo-liberal shock policies of the Abe government.

Every day thousands of men, women and children fleeing war and poverty finally meet death, on land or sea. Those who escape death – refugees or migrants – are exploited, assaulted. They confront racism, prostitution, drugs, corrupt officials and criminal gangs.

The global economic crisis is fueling ever more strident competition between the imperial centers. In 2016 the British ruling class split over Europe, leading to the current calamity of Brexit. And the US ruling class split over how to re-assert US corporate interests, leading to the election of President Trump. Trump is dumping the ultra-neo-liberal schemes of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Instead he favours unilaterally imposing US demands through trade wars with Europe, Japan and China. Trump also opposes the World Trade Organisation where US corporate demands have largely been blocked by the farmers’ movements in poor countries for the last 20 years.

Working men and women everywhere are deeply questioning the capitalist system and on this May Day 2019 we must mobilise, unite and campaign for change to a democratic and sustainable world.

Trade unions, migrant worker organisations, worker cooperatives and worker organizing centers are creating a renewed global workers’ movement. Join it!

  • Increase the national minimum wages and working conditions in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Pacific, and everywhere!
  • Workers’ rights instead of ‘flexibilization’ and ‘contractualization’. Close down global placement agencies.
  • Oppose imperial wars, oppose terrorism, uphold migrant and refugee rights.
  • Strengthen the campaign against trade union repression and criminalization of worker and labor advocates.

JOIN THE INTERNATIONAL LEAGUE OF PEOPLES STRUGGLES AND WORKINS!

Authorised by WORKINS (Workers international Struggle Initiatives) and ILPS Workers Commission (International League of Peoples Struggles) https://workins.wordpress.com http://ilps.info

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ILPS Workers Commission Statement on Palestinian protest in Gaza

Free, Free Palestine!

Killing Children is a crime!

Stop the US killing machine!

The Workers Commission of the International League of Peoples Struggles strongly endorses the rightful and extraordinarily courageous assertion of national rights of the Palestinian people by the population of Gaza since the Day of the Land mobilisation on March 30, 2018.

The march tactics of unarmed, direct, civilian-led mass action has unified the Palestinian people in the politically fractured Gaza Strip, and turned a global spotlight on the horrific situation in which people live in Gaza.

We stand in solidarity with them as they continue to protest under fire through to June 5, the anniversary of the 6-day war when Israel occupied the Palestinian lands of the West Bank and Gaza, the Syrian lands of the Golan Heights, and the Egyptian territory in the Sinai.

On many days up to 35,000 Palestinian people have rallied to the protests, and on many Fridays the number has been over 10,000.

We join our voice to that of the whole ILPS and world opinion to condemn the criminal brutality of the Israeli regime in its use of live ammunition and massive tear gas attacks against unarmed protesters during all these weeks, since March 30. The Israeli military have murdered 168 civilian Palestinians and the wounded 12,600 in the period up to May 20. Many children have been killed and injured. Not one Israeli soldier has been killed, and one was lightly injured.

When Israel made its murderous policy clear on March 30, by killing 19 and wounding 1,416, the international community did not react strongly to protect life and uphold international law, and so the deadly brutality was given the green light.

The decision by the US Trump administration to open its Embassy in Jerusalem on May 14 was the strongest endorsement of the Israeli government’s crimes. On that day, 62 protesters were killed and 3,200 wounded in Gaza. US imperialism has always defended the illegal occupation of Palestinian lands, and Trump is simply the crudest expression yet of this policy.

The Workers Commission in particular condemns the use of snipers to kill two journalists and one doctor and damage 32 ambulances. Ninety journalists and two hundred medics have been wounded.

The Palestinian people are demanding the right of refugees to return to their homes, for an end to the Blockade of Gaza, and are condemning the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem. We stand in solidarity for these demands.

Of course, we demand that the institutions of international law take action against the Israeli government, but we will not wait for them. ILPS Workers Commission calls for ongoing world-wide mobilisations by trade unions, workers and communities to demand justice for the Palestinian people, and an end to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and its criminal blockade of Gaza.

Download pdf Palestine Gaza Statement, ILPS 5 May 25, 2018.

Authorised by ILPS Workers Commission (International League of Peoples Struggles) and WORKINS (Workers international Struggle Initiatives) https://workins.wordpress.com http://ilps.info

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Join the Fight Coca-Cola campaign

Coke workers

Join the Fight Coca-Cola campaign!

The campaign is part of the Fight MNCs campaign of ILPS Workers Commission or Commission 5.

We urge all trade unions, workers’ groups, agricultural workers and farmers’ groups, affected communities, and human rights, environmental and health advocates to join in the campaign.

Campaign objectives

Ø Conduct an education drive about Coca-Cola workers, farmers and affected communities

Ø Conduct, coordinate and support campaign activities related to Coca-Cola workers, farmers and affected communities

Activities that you can join:

Share

Ø Spread Fight Coca-Cola campaign materials by sharing them in social media

Ø Conduct fora, seminars and small-group discussions about Coca-Cola workers, farmers and affected communities

Ø Like our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/ILPSWorkers/ 

Link

Link-up with us for the Fight Coca-Cola campaign. Share your updates about Coca-Cola workers in factories and the supply chain, and affected communities or sectors. Send the updates in ILPS email: ilps.commission5@gmail.com or ILPS Workers Facebook page.

Donate

Support the education drive for Coca-Cola workers. These are workers who are facing struggle against short-term contractualization and other labor disputes, or workers who want to form a union.

 

Show solidarity with Coca-Cola workers

Join the Social Media of Action

Post message of solidarity or share the e-poster below using #CokeWorkersUnite.

cokecampaign-ILPS-v2

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#CokeWorkersUnite

Coke logo

#CokeWorkersUnite

Struggle against MNCs!

Coca-Cola is the world’s richest beverage company. The multinational corporation’s richness rests on the power of monopoly capitalists to rule financial capital, grab resources, control markets, and extract superprofits by exploiting the workers of different countries.

Exploiting the Workers

Coca-Cola directly accounts for around 100,000 workers, but hundreds of thousands more are working in its supply chain.

Workers face exploitation across the Coca-Cola supply chain – suppliers, product distribution, retailers, agriculture.

Factory workers experience contractualization, unpaid overtime, union-busting, occupation health and safety and other labor rights violations.

Coca-Cola’s agricultural supply chain in many countries is marked with poverty wages and repression.

Plundering Resources

In many countries where it operates, it is involved in the plunder of resources especially water, the main ingredient of all its products. The company takes away water from poor urban and rural communities.

Greedy Coca-Cola

Coca-Cola, one of the richest multinational corporations, is controlled by the some of greediest financial capitalists in the world.

Coca-Cola is a US-based company which owns 500 brands including Coke, Sprite, and Powerade. It also owns local brands in different countries. Its system of company-owned and independent bottling and distribution operations are in 200 countries in Africa, Asia Pacific, Middle East, Africa, Europe, Latin America and North America. Its headquarter is in Atlanta, USA.

Its declared revenue for 2017 is $35.4 billion.

Coca Cola is a major sponsor of the biggest media networks – TV, print, radio, social media and major sports and entertainment events all over the world.

Coca-Cola is highly influential in US government and in many governments around the world. It is also influential in trade associations, business councils, NGOs, universities, and research foundations.

It has been reported as one of the biggest companies in US and around the world that evades tax by keeping its cash offshore or outside the country where its top officials are headquartered.

Show solidarity with Coca-Cola workers

Join the Social Media of Action

Post message of solidarity or share the e-poster below using #CokeWorkersUnite.

cokecampaign-ILPS-v2

 

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