Workers in the

last 3 months

 

By Shahla Daneshfar

 

In the last 3 months workers in Iran have continued their protests. Issues such as the minimum wage, the right to organize, unpaid wages and downsizing of workforce, were the foci of workers’  struggle and protests.

   On the issue of government’s decision to set the minimum wage as low as $149 per month, workers have started a petition demanding a minimum wage of at least $549 as the first step. They have declared that they should be getting over $1,220 per month, but that today they are asking for a minimum wage of $549 as the first step, and that a minimum wage less than that should be illegal. According to the reports we have received, this protest petition is being signed in cities such as Tehran, Karaj, Demavand, Kermanshah, Abadan and Isfehan. Only in Kashan, 3,000 workers so far have signed it.

   Furthermore, in protest at the recognition by the ILO of the so-called ‘House of Workers’, which is a government agency, as the representative of Iranian workers, the ‘Follow-up Committee for the Formation of Free Labour Organisations’ has demanded that Iranian workers should have the right to freely organize and that their organizations should be recognized by international organizations

 

 

as Iranian workers’ representatives.

   These latest struggles, focusing on the minimum wage and the right to organize, have given the labour movement a nationwide character.

   Furthermore, in the last three months we have witnessed long strikes such as the two-month long strike in West Alborz coal mine in northern Iran; the strike and control of factory by workers in Filoor, a factory near Tehran, which forced managers to give in to workers’ demands; and rallies and picket lines such as at Pars Textile factory in northern Iran. In Iran-Khodroo car plant, with their solidarity and unity, the workers were able to bring back to work their expelled co-workers. Also, on the anniversary of Khatoon Abad massacre in the city of Babak, in a show of solidarity, the workers of a number of factories climbed Klone Bestack heights.