Iranian workers protest

Submitted by Matthew on 26 November, 2014 - 11:50 Author: Iranian Workers’ Solidarity Network

On Sunday, November 16, 1000 construction workers protested outside the Iranian regime’s “parliament”.

They were protesting against proposed changes to the social insurance law. Workers have written to the Iranian regime’s “MPs” protesting against the change to the social insurance law approved by the Health Commission of “parliament”. Under this plan there will effectively be no new building workers insured and 400,000 of those currently insured by the Social Security Organisation will also lose their insurance. The reduction of the number of workers insured will help developers to boost their profits.

Sacked workers from Ilam Petrochemicals were also protesting against unfair dismissals and unpaid wages. Ilam’s management are also not willing to pay the workers their back-pay. A sacked worker said that the boss is refusing to pay workers 50 million tomans (£11,841) in defiance of a ruling by the Justice Ministry.

This worker also pointed out that the Labour Office has ordered the boss to sign contracts directly with the dismissed workers. The workers are prepared to sign contracts with the sub-contractor only if their job security can be guaranteed. He added: “Of course, we will sign contract with the sub-contractor if the duration of the contract is not less than a year and our job security is not endangered if the sub-contractor is changed. The boss says he will sign a one-month, or at most 45-day, contract with us.”

Hossein-Ali Amiri, an Interior Ministry spokesman, said that peaceful protests by workers demanding the pay and rights are permissible unless they damage public security and order.

During the next few months workers throughout Iran need to test how genuine this statement really is.

Free Shahrokh Zamani and Reza Shahabi

Workers’ Liberty is campaigning for the release of both Shahrokh and Reza, and for all charges against them to be dropped. We aim to collect 10000 signatures by February 11 2015.

This week we collected over 300 signatures on the national demonstration for Free Education. We also did the first of our commuter petitioning sessions and collected 50 signatures. Campaigners have also collected signatures at Kurdish solidarity events, the Defend Julie Davies lobby and in other campaign meetings.

Thank you also to rail workers in Nottingham who posted us some signatures this week.

We have now collected over 2,100 signatures. Lets keep going!

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