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Shipbuilders strike for jobs, trade unions' workers - for financing

18 July 2012 / 21:07:44  GRReporter
2531 reads

Anastasia Balezdrova

Various professional associations are continuing their protests. About 400 workers from Skaramangas shipyard held a protest meeting and went on a procession earlier today. They are complaining about the rotation principle of work and the fact that they haven't received all the salaries they have earned.

Their strike will continue until Friday, and on Monday the shipyards will close again, because of a general meeting, at which the employees will decide what actions to take next. For now, the company's management refuses to accept their request to revoke the rotation work principle, according to which everyone works one day in the week.

The problems in the functioning of the shipbuilding industry in Greece are expected to be discussed during a meeting tomorrow, which will be attended by the ministers of finance, defence, development and shipping. On Monday, shipyard employers were ensured that the government will take actions in their defence. Deputy Minister of Labour Nikos Nikolopoulos noted, that he is ready to accept their request for a three-party meeting, with their participation as well, in order to solve the shipyard's problems.

The meeting will be held at the Ministry of Labour tomorrow, and a few hours later, the Minister of Defence will meet the General Confederation of Greek Workers board of managers.

On their page in the social media Facebook, the confederation appeals to all employees to gather in front of the ministry, because "our future and work will be decided there".

In any case, in the past few days the Ministry of Labour has become a hot spot in the centre of Athens. Today, in front of it protested not more than 50 people - members of the General Confederation of Greek Trade Union Workers.

"We are protesting against the closure of the departments "Worker's Home" and "Worker's Club", enforced by the Memorandum in February this year. Thus a lot of benefits were taken away that these departments were giving to their employees and to the people with low pensions. Therefore, we insist on the creation of a new organization, with which to ensure social benefits."

These two departments' closure, however, caused serious problems in the unobstructed functioning of the syndic organizations. And this is because "Worker's Home" department, which was financed by the contributing payments of workers and their employers, was also financing part of the syndicalist organizations budgets and the salaries of their employees. After its closure, a lot of them are suffering serious financial difficulties, such as impossibility to pay their rent, electricity and telephone bills. In addition, "some of the employees haven't been paid for almost seven months now", said for GRReporter the association's chairwoman, Vaso Kattimenou.

She and several other members of the managing board were met by a Ministry's representative, to whom they presented their requests. Their protest caused negative comments in the social networks. A lot of users sarcastically commented on the massive lay-offs in the private sector and the zero layoffs in the state sector.

Tags: Society protest strike Skaramangas shipyard syndicalist organizations workers Ministry of Labour
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