European Workers Issues
By our reporters, 16 February 2019
For much of Friday, all subways and trams in the capital stood still and most buses remained in their depots.
By Will Morrow, 16 February 2019
Leading union officials have issued warnings to the government that its actions could trigger “uncontrollable” struggles by workers that they cannot prevent.
UK rail strike at South Western Railway, Sibanye gold and platinum miners’ strike continues
15 February 2019
Rail workers at South Western Railway voted by a near 90 percent majority to continue strikes in opposition to the extension of the use of driver only operated trains.
By our reporters, 14 February 2019
Tens of thousands of public sector workers took part in a one-day strike in Berlin on Wednesday. More than 10,000 people marched to the Brandenburg Gate.
By Will Morrow, 14 February 2019
Large parts of Belgium were brought to a standstill yesterday, as tens of thousands of workers took part in a national 24-hour strike to demand wage increases.
By Will Morrow, 13 February 2019
As strikes and protests grow across Europe, anger is mounting among Belgian workers at low wages enforced by state-run talks between business and the unions.
By our reporter, 11 February 2019
The SEP and the WSWS warn rail workers that the RMT bureaucracy cannot be trusted to defend the victimised worker, any more than they can to oppose the introduction of Driver Only Operated trains.
By our reporters, 9 February 2019
For the unions, the day of action was an opportunity for its base of officials and bureaucrats to meet with “yellow vest” protesters and seek to gain control of their movement.
9 February 2019
“I wish you good luck and never give up. You need to be organised and stand up to the oppressing regime in order to succeed.”
UK Arriva North rail sell-out deal, Scottish lecturers’ strike, Sibanye miners’ stoppage continues in South Africa
8 February 2019
Strikes by rail guards working for Arriva North in northern England, who are opposing the introduction of driver only operated trains, have been called off by the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union.
By Will Morrow, 7 February 2019
Introduced in response to the “yellow vest” protests, the law marks a significant step in the transformation of France into a police state.
By Ulrich Rippert, 7 February 2019
As in the case of the bankruptcy of Air Berlin, where Verdi and Lufthansa worked closely together, it is ultimately the workforce that will pay the costs of insolvency.
By Alice Summers, 6 February 2019
While employment rates have being steadily rising since the 2008 global financial crash, this increase has gone hand in glove with growing levels of job insecurity and stagnant pay.
By Margot Miller, 5 February 2019
The response of the trade unions to the job losses was predictably muted. No fight will be waged by them to save a single job.
By Markus Salzmann, 4 February 2019
The one-week strike by 12,000 workers at the Hungarian Audi plant in Györ had a massive impact on production in several factories in Europe and shook the auto industry.
By Steve James, 4 February 2019
Both Tory and Labour politicians support new Free Port deregulation zones.
By Paul Mitchell, 2 February 2019
As the strike movement develops, the unions have sought to dissipate united opposition into regional and sectoral strikes directed at pleading with various ministers, parliament and the president to change course.
Sibanye gold miners’ strike joined by platinum miners; Public worker strikes spread in Kosovo
1 February 2019
The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.
By our reporters, 31 January 2019
The unions have long worked with the parties that form the Berlin Senate to impose cuts.
By Dermot Byrne and David Byrne, 30 January 2019
Members of the Irish Nurses and Midwives Organisation (INMO) are to hold the first in a series of 24-hour strikes today over pay and conditions.
By Clara Weiss, 30 January 2019
The legislation is part of a global assault on free speech on the internet and a censorship campaign against independent news outlets.
By Carlos Hernández, 29 January 2019
Barcelona taxi drivers voted to end their strike and accept the regional Catalan government’s decree establishing stricter regulations for vehicle-for-hire licenses.
By Markus Salzmann, 28 January 2019
Thousands of auto workers began a one-week strike on Thursday at an Audi plant in Györ, western Hungary.
By our correspondent, 28 January 2019
The WSWS has been sent this appeal from a UK rail worker to colleagues employed by state run Nederlandse Spoorwegen (Dutch Railways). It calls for a joint fight against its privatised arm, Abellio, which is currently attacking jobs and working conditions across its private UK rail franchises.
By Anthony Torres and Alex Lantier, 26 January 2019
The Pabloite New Anticapitalist Party’s calls for the unions to take over the “yellow vest” protests amounts to an attempt to strangle growing opposition among workers.
By Dietmar Gaisenkersting, 25 January 2019
Members of the Socialist Equality Party discussed with Ford workers in Cologne about the formation of action committees independent of the unions to initiate a campaign to defend jobs.
By Darren Paxton, 23 January 2019
Teachers in Scotland are demanding a 10 percent pay increase, having rejected on several occasions the Scottish government’s offer of a paltry 3 percent.
23 January 2019
By Chris Marsden, 22 January 2019
With just 67 days before Brexit is scheduled to take place on March 29, Corbyn has once again folded his hand and united with his right-wing.
By Barry Mason, 21 January 2019
The trade unions act as management partners and are doing nothing to oppose the job losses.
By our correspondents, 18 January 2019
Lecturers are demanding a 2.5 percent increase, which merely covers for inflation, against an offer from the employers group Colleges Scotland of 0.9 percent.
By Anthony Torres, 18 January 2019
The “yellow vest” movement has unmasked the class gulf separating the workers from the union bureaucracies and organizations such as the pseudo-left Lutte ouvrière .
By Chris Marsden, 15 January 2019
The fight over Brexit revolves around the best means of advancing the interests of British imperialism for control of global markets.
By Alice Summers, 15 January 2019
While the vast majority of British workers have suffered a decline in wages unsurpassed for over a century, top bosses have seen their pay grow rapidly year on year.
By Sozialistische Gleichheitspartei, Socialist Equality Party and Parti de l’égalité socialiste, 15 January 2019
The working class cannot accept the “right” of the corporations to shut plants down, decimate entire communities and destroy the lives of tens of thousands of workers.
By Paul Mitchell, 14 January 2019
So far this year, strike action has taken place or is pending in the judicial system, dockyards, oil refineries and food industry and among teachers and nurses.
By Steve James, 14 January 2019
The deeper the crisis, the more openly the Labour Party and the trade unions reveal their function as a political and industrial police force for big business over the working class.
By Robert Stevens, 12 January 2019
Last October, JLR posted losses of £90 million and has seen a collapse in sales by nearly 50 percent in its main and most profitable market, China.
By K. Nesan and Marianne Arens, 12 January 2019
The work stoppages make clear the enormous anger of security staff and their willingness to fight.
By Will Morrow, 11 January 2019
The company’s statement bluntly spells out the role to be played by the unions—which it correctly labels its “trade union partners”—in suppressing opposition among workers.
By Alex Lantier, 11 January 2019
The debate is an attempt to strangle mounting opposition while continuing reactionary policies of austerity and militarism under cover of a few empty phrases.
By Steve James, 3 January 2019
Workers at optical electronics firm Kaiam in Livingston, Scotland, were laid off following the company’s collapse.
By Margot Miller, 3 January 2019
Over the last five years, an estimated 2,627 homeless people have perished on the streets.
Fight by rail guards at UK rail franchises continues
28 December 2018
The World Socialist Web Site invites workers and other readers to contribute to this regular feature.
By our reporter, 24 December 2018
Over 100 workers, contractors, small businesspeople and unemployed gathered to discuss perspectives for a struggle against French President Emmanuel Macron.
By Angela Austin, 24 December 2018
Underground rail workers have been involved in a series of disputes and strikes over worsening working conditions, staff shortages and victimisations.
By Paul Mitchell, 22 December 2018
To stem rising social anger, the government in Portugal secured an agreement from Facebook to close down the Yellow Vest protest organisers’ website and drafted in 20,000 security police.
By Ajanta Silva, 22 December 2018
The re-elected union functionaries played a crucial role in selling a rotten pay deal to their members earlier this year, after conspiring with other unions and the government.
South Africa Sibanye miners’ strike made illegal
21 December 2018
Some 15,000 workers at three mines operated by Sibanye’s three gold mines are continuing a strike that has now been declared illegal based on allegations of violence on the part of workers.
By Alex Lantier, 17 December 2018
The media and official parties are pressing the “yellow vests” to accept the legalizing of citizen-initiated referendums as a concession that would justify ending the protests.
By Will Morrow, 15 December 2018
The Paris police prefect announced that the response would be “about the same” as last Saturday, which saw mass arrests of over 1,700 people.
By Ulrich Rippert, 14 December 2018
At a factory meeting last Monday, local Ford management announced that production of the company’s C-Max model is to be discontinued with the loss of 1,600 jobs.
By Alex Lantier, 14 December 2018
The eruption of a political movement in the working class has provoked a rabidly hostile reaction from the middle-class anti-Marxist “left” milieu.
By Clara Weiss, 13 December 2018
The crackdown on the strike in Kamchatka reflects the fear within the Russian oligarchy that the development of the class struggle internationally will sooner rather than later drive Russian workers into open struggle.
By Marianne Arens, 12 December 2018
As part of the new restructuring of the global auto industry, Ford is seeking to cut 25,000 jobs worldwide, with the largest number of job losses in Europe.
By Alex Lantier, 12 December 2018
The students are opposing the government’s right-wing reforms and re-imposition of compulsory military service, while showing their support for the “yellow vests.”
By Barry Mason, 12 December 2018
The unions have already made clear they accept the need to reduce costs, urging only that there should be no compulsory redundancies.
By Alex Lantier, 11 December 2018
Governments worldwide are panicking in the face of the growing militancy and political radicalization of the international working class.
UK workers, young people defend Yellow Vest protests in France: “I only wish that we could do it here as well!”
By our reporters, 11 December 2018
WSWS reporters spoke to workers and youth in Britain who support the Yellow Vest protests in France.
By Alex Lantier, 10 December 2018
The critical question is the independent organization of the working class, in France and internationally, in the preparation of a European general strike.
By our reporters, 10 December 2018
In this video, workers participating in France’s “yellow vests” demonstrations explain their demands and appeal for international support.
By our reporters, 10 December 2018
German workers who spoke with Socialist Equality Party (SGP) candidates, expressed sympathy with the mass protests of the “yellow vests” in France. Many share the same grievances and confront the same inequities.
By Alex Lantier and Kumaran Ira, 9 December 2018
The French president’s attempts to staunch the protests through a combination of phony concessions and state violence have clearly failed.
By Alex Lantier and Francis Dubois, 8 December 2018
Amid rising popular support for demonstrations against austerity and inequality, French officials are warning they will stop at nothing to halt the protests.
By Simon Whelan and Robert Stevens, 8 December 2018
The UCU, past masters at isolating and demobilising struggles over pay and job losses, finally authorised a token pay strike at the end of November—at just six institutions.
By Alex Lantier, 7 December 2018
As they face Macron’s brutal crackdown, workers and students in France fighting austerity and inequality must turn to the international working class.
“We stand with you because all of us are in the same fight”
By Jerry White, 6 December 2018
The determination of the “yellow vest” protesters in the face of state repression by the French government has inspired workers in the United States and around the world.
By Dietmar Henning, 6 December 2018
Bayer AG has announced plans to cut a tenth of its workforce worldwide and divest parts of its corporate empire.
By our reporters, 6 December 2018
For over two years, RMT and the drivers’ union ASLEF in the UK have sabotaged the fight by thousands of guards in defence of their jobs and the safety of railway users.
GM, Ford, Bayer, Bombardier
By Jerry White, 5 December 2018
The plant closings and layoffs at GM are part of a broader assault on the working class throughout the world being directed by the most powerful corporate interests.
By Alex Lantier, 5 December 2018
The critical task facing protests against austerity and inequality in France is to expand the struggle more broadly into the French and international working class.
By Alex Lantier, 4 December 2018
With a fourth consecutive Saturday of mass demonstrations against French President Emmanuel Macron’s regressive taxes planned this weekend, tens of thousands of high school students throughout France have staged demonstrations at their schools.
By The World Socialist Web Site Editorial Board, 3 December 2018
This weekend’s anti-austerity demonstrations in France have shown the working class to be not just an oppressed class, but a revolutionary class.
By Anthony Torres, 3 December 2018
As protests spread across Europe, after the most violent police crackdown in downtown Paris in a half century, a historic political crisis is erupting.
By Alex Lantier, 1 December 2018
The struggles pose the necessity of organizing workers and youth independently of the unions and the parties defending Macron.
By Alejandro López, 1 December 2018
For years the regional bourgeoisie has relentlessly promoted Catalan nationalism to bury the socio-economic concerns of workers and youth, both Spanish and Catalan.
UK: Cammell Laird shipyard workers strike against redundancies, Iran sugar and steel strike continues against pay arrears, South Africa’s Sibanye gold miners reject company/union pay deal
1 December 2018
Workers at Cammell Laird shipyard in Birkenhead, England have launched a series of strikes over redundancies while workers at the Tappeh Sugar Cane mill in Iran are continuing a walkout and gold miners in South Africa are continuing a series of job actions marked by employer violence.
By Alex Lantier, 28 November 2018
French President Macron’s decision to give a speech addressing the protesters only made clear that he firmly intends to pursue his right-wing policies and has nothing to offer.
By our reporter, 28 November 2018
None of those arrested at the demonstrations in Paris were wanted on charges associated with either far-right or anarchist groups.
By John Vassilopoulos, 27 November 2018
Strikes and protests in Greece are part of a wider upsurge of the class struggle throughout Europe.
By Charles Hixson, 27 November 2018
Rather than being random tragedies, such accidents are the direct result of deliberate government policies.
By Alex Lantier, 27 November 2018
The talks Macron is slated to offer today to the Yellow Vest protesters are a trap for a movement that requires a turn to the working class and a revolutionary strategy.
By Alex Lantier, 26 November 2018
The French Interior Ministry claimed that 106,000 people participated in over a thousand protests across France, including 8,000 demonstrators on the Champs-Elysées in Paris.
By Robert Stevens, 26 November 2018
Both strikes have developed in a rebellion against the collaboration, by the Unite and GMB trade unions, with the employers’ job cuts.
By Alex Lantier, 24 November 2018
As the government of French President Emanuel Macron moved to ban protests against its fuel tax increase, strikes and demonstrations in support of the protest movement spread across France yesterday.
By our reporters, 24 November 2018
Amazon workers launched strikes and protests in Germany, Spain, Italy, Poland, France and the UK.
No to driver only operated services at West Midland Trains! For a national mobilisation of rail workers
By Michael Barnes, 24 November 2018
Drivers at West Midlands Trains are resisting a coordinated effort by the private train operator Abellio and rail unions to impose Driver Only trains in 2020.
By our reporter, 23 November 2018
The Scottish government, local authorities, teaching and local government unions are desperate to avoid strikes, and above all to prevent a united offensive by teachers and council workers.
By our reporters, 20 November 2018
Participants in the “Yellow Vest” protests across France, which continued yesterday in a number of regions, talked to the WSWS about why they are demonstrating.
By Alex Lantier, 19 November 2018
There were cries of “Macron resign” from protesters holding signs saying “No to the president of the rich.”
By Anthony Torres, 16 November 2018
Fear is growing in official circles that tomorrow’s nationwide road blockades could develop into an explosion of mass social anger against French President Macron.
By Anthony Torres, 15 November 2018
Monday’s strike was the first day of action called by the education unions since 2011.
“It’s about safety but the train operating companies want to save money”
By our reporter, 13 November 2018
Rail workers in the UK have been fighting for over two years against the plans by the private rail franchises to introduce Driver Only Operated (DOO) trains.
By Peter Austin, 9 November 2018
The tube strikes express the anger of workers after a decade of budget cuts, reductions in real wages, longer work weeks and an increase in working weekends as agreed by the unions.
Nigerian unions call off general strike over minimum wage
9 November 2018
Nigeria’s three main labour federations called off a general strike set for November 6 and announced that they had reached an undisclosed settlement with the government over a rise in the country’s minimum wage.
Growing strikes in South Africa; more UK rail strikes
26 October 2018
Workers in South Africa’s plastics industry are continuing their strike after an attempt by employers to ban the walkout was temporarily defeated.
By Marianne Arens, 24 October 2018
The Swiss unions are organising toothless protests and limited strikes aimed at dissipating the militancy of workers.
By Steve James, 23 October 2018
Eight thousand poorly-paid, mostly women workers are due to strike October 23 and 24 in a long-running dispute with Glasgow City Council and its care services agency.
By Alice Summers and Robert Stevens, 20 October 2018
Behind talk of a coordinated struggle, the demand of service workers for better pay and conditions is being misled by the trade unions.
South African plastics workers in national strike; Capetown transport workers wildcat
19 October 2018
Some 10,000 plastics workers in South Africa are on strike seeking the revocation of a pay reduction while bus drivers in Capetown walked out Monday demanding improvements in wages and working conditions.