Prior to Unison’s national delegates conference (16-19 June), Unison General Secretary Dave Prentis released a press statement about the Tories’ proposed anti-union laws. But neither his statement nor the conference itself resolved to do anything much about the biggest threat to union organisation in two decades.
The new laws would require a 50% turnout threshold in a ballot and an additional 40% yes vote requirement in “core public services” (health, education, transport and fire services). Essentially outlawing all national strikes.
Israeli workers are preparing for a national strike on July 22.
With little comment, support or encouragement from any international workers organisations. These worker's issues seem not to be worthy of support. It looks like it is just too embarrassing to declare worker's solidarity - if the workers are Israeli.
"The Histadrut national labor federation announced Tuesday that it would hold a general strike countrywide July 22, unless the Finance Ministry compromises in ongoing negotiations over the work conditions of public sector contract workers.
The contract workers are usually low paid security guards, cleaning women, etc., who are hired for fixed periods of time and then fired, and thus do not qualify for benefits and rights accorded to more permanent workers.
Hitadrut head Avi Nisankorn held a press conference in Tel Aviv Tuesday and announced that the strike would commence in two weeks unless negotiations – which began eight months ago but have since stalled – are restarted, and significant inroads are made.
"We will show our solidarity, our power, and our commitment to this issue,” he vowed."
Af al pe chen . . . (nevertheless . . . )
The Israeli General Federation of Labour has just achieved impressive gains for many many workers.
Minister of Finance Moshe Kahlon and Histadrut (General Federation of Labor in Israel) chairman Avi Nissenkorn have reached understandings that will end the labor dispute over the employment of contract workers. The general strike planned to start on Wednesday has consequently been cancelled.
Uriel Lynn photo: Tamar Matsafi
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Kahlon and Nissenkorn are formulating the understandings after discussing the matter late into the night last night. Their discussions continued this morning, and eventually resulted in agreement. Under the agreement, 10,000 contract workers in the public sector will become full government employees within 4 years and 6,000 contract workers in the private sector will receive employees status.