Monday, March 31, 2014

CANADA:::Union seeks right to represent Toyota plants in Canada

Canada’s largest private-sector union, Unifor, seeks to represent Toyota plant workers in Cambridge and Woodstock.

Members of Unifor, Canada's largest private-sector union, march in Toronto's annual Labour Day Parade in September. Unifor is seeking the right to represent more than 6,500 autoworkers at Toyota's Canadian assembly plants in Cambridge and Woodstock.
Members of Unifor, Canada's largest private-sector union, march in Toronto's annual Labour Day Parade in September. Unifor is seeking the right to represent more than 6,500 autoworkers at Toyota's Canadian assembly plants in Cambridge and Woodstock.
The country’s largest private-sector union is seeking the right to represent more than 6,500 autoworkers at Toyota’s Canadian assembly plants in Cambridge and Woodstock.
If successful, the plants would become the first Toyota assembly plants in North America to have union representation, a major victory for the labour movement as its traditional base — U.S.-owned auto plants — continues to shrink.

Union opposes legislative action on minimum wage

The head of the state's largest labor union said his organization would oppose any move by lawmakers to raise the minimum wage ahead of a vote by Alaskans, fearing legislators will gut the law like they did 12 years ago.

A-Mart dispute in Melbourne, Australia a possible sign of times to come

A lock-out of 40 workers at a warehouse in the industrial belt of the northern suburbs of Melbourne that has been going on for three weeks might be one of the first signs of an anti worker offensive by the new right wing Australian government. The workers at the A-Mart warehouse were wanting the right to collectively bargain, a modest pay rise after four years and better health and safety conditions. In response the company, locked the entire workforce out. Solidarity from other workers and unions is supporting the locked out workers. This dispute has to be seen in conjunction with moves to destroy the CFMEU, one of Australia’s most powerful unions, and a Royal Commission into union finances. source:::

Jordan oil workers win massive pay rise

This week saw the 3,600 members of the General Union of Petroleum & Chemical Workers in Jordan win a new collective agreement. The new contract gives workers a 30% pay rise, improvement to the retirement benefits, health and medical services for all workers and their families including pensioners. This surprising result might have been due to the Government’s fear of ongoing instability in the region influencing workers in Jordan and reigniting mass protests like those of a couple of years ago.

Walmart workers in China fight against dismissals

Earlier this month, Walmart declared that it was going to close five of its stores in China. The company’s offer of compensation and a two week notice period was rejected by its workforce. Defying many people’sexpectations, the local ACFTU representative led the protests against Walmart. Under pressure from Walmart, local authorities sent the police to break the protests, and while some workers were injured,protests are continuing with workers rejecting the company’s offer. See video here. Walmart is one of the biggest companies in the world and is notorious for its anti-union stance. In the USA, workers are finallybeginning to organise.

Nurses in Pakistan achieve historic win

As recently reported, thousands of nurses in Lahore, Pakistan were subjected to a brutal police charge which nearly killed one of the striking nurses. Instead of intimidating the nurses, this action served to galvanise support for the striking workers. Solidarity rallies and events were held all around Pakistan and in Lahore there was great unity among other workers in the health sector. All 2,800 nurses were reinstated by the government on three year contracts, as well as achieving a substantial pay rise. This win shows the importance and power of class solidarity.

Eleven workers killed in another factory fire in China

On Wednesday a fire broke out in a small garment factory in Puning county in southern Guangdong. The factory was situated in a five storey building. The factory only had one exit, there were many hazardous materials stored inside the factory and there were no safety procedures in place. In addition to the deaths, 17 workers were injured. Unfortunately this latest accident underscores the terrible health and safety that many Chinese workers have to endure and that kills and injures thousands every year.


Saturday, March 29, 2014

Bangladesh:::This Is How You Make Garment Factories Safer

Meeting in Dhaka of the IndustriALL Bangladesh Council
Meeting in Dhaka of the IndustriALL Bangladesh Council with international safety professionals as part of the rollout of the Bangladesh Accord (Photo: Asiful Hoque. Courtesy: Garrett Brown)
One of the major achievements of the labor movement in the aftermath of last April's Rana Plaza factory tragedy is the Accord on Fire and Building Safety in Bangladesh. The agreement, which was negotiated by worker advocates and brands last year and is now in its first stages of implementation, is ostensibly a landmark set of health and safety regulations for the country’s burgeoning garment industry. But it is also a political document, and a response to a horrific history of industrial accidents in the Global South. Even more, it symbolizes the tension between the politics of enforcement, and the imperative of public health, where workers now have an opening to win more control over their workplaces.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

MALAYSIA:::Railway union wants KTMB president sacked

The Railwaymen's Union of Malaya (Rum) has urged the government to sack KTMB Bhd president Elias Kadir, saying it has lost confidence in his leadership.

Union president Abdul Razak Mohd Hassan is backing KTMB new chairperson Nawawi Ahmad, who has an alternative business plan for the loss-making rail corporation.

MALAYSIA:::Gov’t powerless over COLA in private sector / MTUC, MEF perlu bincang dahulu isu Cola

The Human Resource Ministry says it is entirely up to employees to negotiate the cost of living allowance from their employers.
kerajaan swastaKUALA LUMPUR: The Human Resource Ministry said today it was powerless to compel private sector employers to pay their staff a monthly cost of living allowance (COLA) of RM300, saying it was the sole prerogative of employers.
“The implementation of COLA is under the employer’s jurisdiction and the ministry has no power over the matter.
“However, the ministry encourages constructive negotiation between employers and employees so they can come to an agreement that includes a COLA,” Deputy Minister Ismail Abdul Muttalib told the Dewan Rakyat during the question session this morning.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

MH 370 >>>MAS CEO's head must roll, says union / Kesatuan mahu CEO MAS letak jawatan

The National Union of Flight Attendants Malaysia (Nufam) has called for the resignation of Malaysia Airlines chief executive officer Ahmad Jauhari Yahya following the prolonged MH370 disaster.
Nufam, which has long been at loggerheads with Ahmad Jauhari over  workers' issues, said that the latter's resignation could restore public confidence in the airline.

"(Nufam) believes it is the right thing to do now as this even has brought tremendous impact on the aviation industry in this country...

"Since the Flight 370 tragedy (happened) under his watch, it is rightful for him to step aside and allow someone else to take over his position," Nufam said in a statement.

It said that Ahmad Jauhari must also step down following two other incidents involving MAS flights - the incident in Kathmandu, where a flight  was hit by flying ducks and in Hong Kong, where a flight en route Seoul had to divert to due to generator failure.

It added that airline staff has also "lost confidence" in the way Ahmad Jauhari has handled the crisis which entered its 19th day today.

Following the Hong Kong incident, Nufam also released a statement urging MAS to ensure stringent safety checks on its aircraft, citing cabin crew concerns.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

MH370 signal loss consistent with fuel limit

MH370 Since Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 vanished after mysteriously cutting communications with air traffic controllers, the aircraft's automated ping to Inmarsat's satellite has been the only clue to its final whereabouts.

South Africa: EFF Statement of Solidarity and Support for the AMCU Strike

Economic Freedom Fighters stands in solidarity with the mineworkers who have been fighting for a living wage on the picket lines of the Rustenburg and Northham platinum belt. Mineworkers, led by the revolutionary and uncompromising Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union are demanding a wage increase of R12, 500 and have now entered their second month in the strike.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Japanese metalworkers secured the biggest pay rise since 1999

The 2014 yearly wage bargaining Spring Labor Offensive by the Japanese metalworkers’ unions achieved reasonable results.

Over 50 unions representing workers of large companies in automotive, ICT electrical & electronics, machinery, steel and shipbuilding industries affiliated to Japan Council of Metalworkers' Unions – JCM made their input to a successful collective bargaining campaign resulted in the biggest pay rise for workers in the last 15 years when the Japanese economy has been suffering from deflation.

Friday, March 21, 2014

MALAYSIA:::MTUC’s response to Medecci Lineil

MTUC’s response to Medecci Lineil
We refer to Medecci Lineil’s letter attacking our call to the authorities to step up their operations to weed out illegal immigrants in coffee shops in Miri Sarawak. While we understand the economic incentive for employers to maximise profits, we reject Medecci’s arguments and his continued use of so called Austrian Libertarian economic principles to take such an extreme position.

S.Africa's largest union marches for youth jobs

South Africa's 340,000-strong NUMSA union marched Wednesday to protest a new labour law it says will increase unemployment and poverty, amid a tense stand-off with the ruling ANC weeks before polls.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Human rights activists in Sri Lanka still live in fear

The situation for labour activists and human rights defenders in Sri Lanka hasremained very dangerous with the Government committed to silencing any critic since its victory over the LTTE. In mid February, Sunil Samaradeera was abducted by unknown assailants and held for two days. The police have made no effort to find his abductors and now Sunil fears for his life. Meanwhile, the issue of a newly discovered mass grave has still been unresolved amid claims that the government is trying to hide something. source:::

Fukushima nuclear disaster - 3 years on and still not safe

As reported previously, the damaged nuclear reactor of Fukushima is still not safe putting both workers and communities at risk. Last week on the third anniversary of the tsunami striking the Fukushima nuclear reactor, demonstrations against the Government’s handling of this disaster and its intentions to restart Japan’s nuclear industry took place throughout Japan. One of the major unresolved problems of the Fukushima reactor is the large amount of radioactive material that is still present.

Harsh organising conditions for workers in Pakistan

It has been a terrible week for Pakistani workers where in two separate incidents, five workers were killed and many others injured. In the first incident, a boiler exploded at the Irfan Gas Factory Green Town Lahore killing four workers and injuring up to 20 others. In a separate part of Lahore, police attacked a picket line of nurses who were demanding better wages and conditions. A seven-month pregnant nurse and her three colleagues suffered injuries during the baton charge. These two events reflect the terrible conditions that workers in Pakistan have to endure. A couple of years ago, six workers where given 80 year sentences for organising demonstrations. source:::

Philippines:::Stop the Killings! Killings and arrests of activists continue in the Philippines

The situation for labour and human rights activists in the Philippines has always been a very difficult one with the country having one of the worst human rights records in the world. In the first two months of this year, human rights organisations have recorded 8 extrajudicial killings, 5 attempted assassinations, 5 illegal arrests & 3 abductions. Many of these crimes were conducted by illegal militias. Victims included labour activists, human


BURMA: Workers at garment factory secure 20% pay rise

Collective bargaining by a union in Burma/Myanmar has secured a 20% pay rise for garment workers at a factory in Yangon.
The IndustriAll Global Union said the increase for workers at the Yes 1 facility was won after “tense and drawn-out” negotiations, and was formulated in an Industriall training workshop attended by union president Win Theinghi Soe, as well as other executive committee members, in December 2013.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014


Berikut adalah petikan daripada Hansard 18/3/2014, khususnya mulai ucapan Abdullah Sani sehingga akhir...

Tuan  Abdullah  Sani  bin  Abdul  Hamid  [Kuala  Langat]:  Terima  kasih  Tuan  Yang  diPertua. Meneruskan Titah  Ucapan  Menjunjung  Kasih  Ke  bawah  Duli  Tuanku  Yang  di-Pertuan Agong,  saya  ingin merungkaikan  beberapa  isu  yang  sekarang  ini  diperkatakan  dengan  begitu hebat  terutama  sekali  MAS yang  melibatkan  hampir  227  orang  penumpang  dan  krew,  pekerja MAS yang saya anggap harus diberikan doa supaya mereka ini selamat. Semua rakyat Malaysia bersatu dalam memastikan pesawat ‘HM370’ ini dapat dijumpai dalam keadaan yang selamat...

Sunday, March 16, 2014

MALAYSIA:::MTUC Launch Action Programme to assist Migrant Domestic Workers

Domestic workers' working conditions range far below the minimum standards of the formal sector. They rarely have a work contract with their employer, their salaries are below the minimum salary in the formal sector, and their working conditions entail long working hours and a very small number get a day off. They live in social isolation because of their long working hours and live-in arrangement with the employer, which means that the employer can exercise full control over their lives. As a result of this control and isolation, domestic workers are frequently exposed to mental and physical abuse from their employers and the employer's family.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

MALAYSIA:::MTUC calls for action

KUCHING: Malaysian Trade Union Congress (MTUC) has called on the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry to stem the employment of illegal foreign workers in the state.
“Police and immigration have to step up the raids without fear or favour and to fully enforce the law. We must eradicate the scourge of illegal foreign workers once and for all,” said MTUC Sarawak secretary Andrew Lo (pic) in a press statement yesterday.
Lo said the operators and owners of restaurants and coffee shops in Miri, which numbered about 500, should not put pressure on the authorities to halt ongoing operations to weed out illegal foreign workers.
“The authorities must arrest the owners of these outlets for employing and harbouring illegal foreign workers.
“It (harbouring) has caused huge economic losses to the country in terms of domestic consumption, denying of employment opportunities to locals, and not to mention the security and safety risk to the country with more than estimated one million illegal foreign workers.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014


MALAYSIA:::Majikan lewat bayar gaji

  • Majikan lewat bayar gajiPengawal keselamatan ini berharap isu kelewatan pembayaran gaji oleh majikan mereka segera berakhir.
KUALA BERANG - Senasib! Demikian situasi dihadapi kira-kira 50 pengawal keselamatan di beberapa sekolah di daerah ini yang turut diselubungi dilema sebagaimana pengawal keselamatan di Batu Rakit gara-gara lewat dibayar gaji oleh majikan.

Sinar Harian 18 Februari lalu menyiarkan keluhan pengawal keselamatan di Batu Rakit, Kuala Terengganu yang terpaksa merayu untuk mendapatkan gaji mereka dan ternyata senario sama juga dihadapi golongan berkenaan di daerah Hulu Terengganu ini.

Missing MH370: Iranian "Mr Ali" bought impostors' tickets in Pattaya

KUALA LUMPUR: Travel arrangements for the two passengers with fake identities on the missing flight MH370 bound for Beijing were made in the Thai resort town of Pattaya and paid for in cash, according to a report.

Indonesian workers battling paper and pulp giant once again

Indonesian paper workers at one of the world’s largest paper mills have begun a one-month strike over wages and conditions. The strike was in response to Asia Pulp and Paper management breaking off collective bargaining talks and its use of local army units and police to intimidate workers. Non union labour has been brought in to break the strike by the company. Asia Pulp and Paper is one of the biggest paper companies in the world, and has a history of anti worker tactics. To increase our effectiveness, we need to coordinate our actions against such companies at a global level. source:::

Electronics workers on strike in Shenzhen, China

Since the middle of this week, more than 1,000 workers at the IBM ISTC factory in Shenzhen, Southern China, have been on strike. The workers are protesting against the proposed severance pay that they are being offered as the factory has been sold to another global electronics firm, Lenovo. This issue is only one of many that the workers have against management in terms of work conditions and health and safety. This strike is another example of an emerging new combativeness among the Chinese working class. source:::