Fourth Regional Meeting for Workers' Health in Anzoategui
By Rachael Boothroyd - Venezuelanalysis.com
Over 200 workers, mostly union representatives and "prevention delegates", attended the Fourth Regional Meeting for Workers' Health on the 16th-17th of September in Anzoategui state.
The goals of the event were to: strengthen workers' knowledge of their health and safety rights, analyse the impact of labour flexibilisation on workers' health and the unsafe conditions for many workers on temporary contracts, as well as to exchange experiences and promote unification within the workers' movement.
On Friday, workers were divided into roughly 5 work groups in order to debate a series of issues relating to workers' health and safety. Issues included "Negative Psychological and Social Aspects at the Workplace" and "Advances and Obstacles to Workers' Organisation and Mobilisation for Safety at Work".
Each group had a debate coordinator and two elected "secretaries" who were in charge of writing down and compiling proposals. At the end of Saturday morning, proposals were put to a vote and each group then presented its ratified statements to the other groups.
Amongst other proposals, the 1st of November was passed as the date for a national march on the National Assembly in Caracas, demanding the approval of the "Law for Workers' Control" and the "revolutionisation" (not reform) of the existing Work Law.
Participants watched a documentary on the persecution of Mitsubishi workers in Barcelona and presented their work group proposals in the main hall (Rachael Boothroyd - Venezuelanalysis).
The work group "Advances and Obstacles to Workers' Organisation and Mobilisation for Safety at Work" voting for a proposal (Rachael Boothroyd - Venezuelanalysis)">.
Different books and leaflets were available, from Marxist political theory to leaflets explaining workers’ control (Rachael Boothroyd - Venezuelanalysis).
Presentation on the case of Provegran in Aragua, where 9 workers asphyxiated to death on the 18th August 2003. Constant worker mobilisation and a campaign for justice for the deceased men were successful, and in August this year two managers were given jail sentences of three and seven years for the deaths of the workers (Rachael Boothroyd - Venezuelanalysis).
Felix Martinez, General Secretary of the SINGETRAM Union for Mitsubishi Motors (MMC). Management at the factory have dismissed over 300 workers, including union SINGETRAM leaders (11) and prevention delegates (22), since the union began a struggle for workers' control. MMC has also brought a lawsuit against 7 of the workers, including Martinez, for allegedly damaging property at the factory and violence towards security personnel. No evidence has been provided to back up these allegations and the trial date has yet to be fixed (Rachael Boothroyd - Venezuelanalysis).
Published on Oct 10th 2011 at 7.56pm