Monthly Archives: June 2012

Wokers In East Java Protest For Papua

Berita Jatim reports of a demonstration outside a military command center in Mojokerto, East Java by workers from Persatuan Pergerakan Buruh Indonesia (PPBI).  The workers called for the end of violence and human rights violations in Papua.

The IndoLeft News Service provides an English translation of the article:

Scores of activists from the United Indonesian Labour Movement (PPBI) went to the 0815 Mojokerto District Military Command Headquarters in the East Java city of Mojokerto on June 21 to demand an immediate resolution to all the forms of violence and human rights violations that are taking place in West Papua.

Carrying symbols of the trade union, the activists held the action at the Mojokerto city square where they conveyed their demands including an end to all forms of violence by security forces against activists and the Papuan people and the withdrawal of non-organic troops from Papua.

Arrest and try the military and police perpetrators of violence, murder and shootings in Papua, free the Papuan people and activists that are currently in jail (Filep Karma, Buchtar Tabuni) and form an independent fact finding team to conduct a fast and effective investigation that can uncover the truth and bring perpetrators to justice.

They also called for a broad dialogue that is open, democrat and free from pressure or repression for and by the Papuan people under the supervision of national and international observers. After giving speeches union representatives handed over a list of demands to the district military command headquarters.

Action coordinator Thoha Maksum said that their aim in coming to the headquarters was to convey a letter of protest over violence by rouge TNI (Indonesian military) and police officers in Papua. “We hope that the 0815 District Military Command will assist in conveying this letter to the TNI headquarters”, he said earlier this morning.

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Adidas “Slavery” Shoes

By Mike Thompson, Detroit Free Press

Mike Thompson discusses the Adidas “slavery” shoes in The Detroit Free Press:

Still, I’d question why our outrage is limited to the design of a shoe when products sold by Adidas and any number of familiar brand name companies have reportedly been manufactured, or are being manufactured, in third world sweatshops by workers who are paid a pittance and who endure an existence that would give slavery a run for its money on the misery index?

Adidas has come under fire in the past over accusations that its suppliers were manufacturing its products in sweatshops and earlier this year the British newspaper “The Independent” reported that Olympic uniforms were being manufactured for Adidas in Indonesian supplier sweatshops where workers endure 65 hour workweeks and hideously low wages. Adidas has taken steps in the past to address the problem and promises to investigate these most recent claims.

Hotel Workers Strike at Hotel Guci and D’batoe

Hotel Guci and DBatoe workers on strike. Sign reads “Sorry Boss…Workers On Strike” (BNP/Job/Gagah Bagus)

Workers from the hotel union Federasi Serikat Pekerja Mandiri (FSPM) went on strike at Hotel Guci and D’batoe after management refused to make them permanent employees after three months of employment, as previously promised.

[This the first I’ve seen of this, may be more reports coming]

More On Victory For the “Nestle 53”

Eric Lee has written an article for In These Times on the role of the International Union of Foodworkers (IUF) in helping the Nestle workers in Panjang reach a settlement.

At its recent world congress in Geneva, IUF affiliates stepped up to the plate to show their support for their fellow union members. They did this not by passing resolutions and sending protest emails —though that may well be part of a campaign.  Instead they raised money, lots of money, to sustain the workers during what is turning out to be a long and bitter dispute.

Throughout the congress, the chairperson would make periodic announcements as unions made pledges of thousands of dollars. At one point, the IUF’s General Secretary, Ron Oswald, announced that rank-and-file workers at a Nestlé factory in the U.K. had raised £1,000 (about $1,550) for their brothers and sisters in Panjang.

If Nestlé thought they could get away with quietly intimidating union members in a far away corner of the world, they were sorely mistaken. Though international trade union solidarity may sound like a thing from the past, the IUF announced its campaign on the web, Facebook and Twitter.