Archiv

Streik

Die Krise kommt mittlerweile in der „Werkbank der Welt“ auch am Arbeitsmarkt an.  Aus Protest gegen Entlassungen sind etwa in der chinesischen Wirtschaftsmetropole Shanghai mehr als tausend Arbeiter einer Elektronikfabrik in den Streik getreten. Die Fabrik gehört der Elektronikfirma Hi-P International aus Singapur. Hi-P produziert für Apple. Das Unternehmen hat rund tausend Arbeitern gekündigt, weil es die Produktion in die nahe gelegene Stadt Suzhou verlegen will. Auch die Zeiten, wo Chinas Arbeiterschaft willig und unter allen Bedingungen vor sich hinarbeitete sind offensichtlich vorbei. Die Arbeiter zeigen vermehrt Selbstbewusstsein: Immer wieder erheben sich die Werktätigen und pochen auf ihre Rechte. Laut der in den USA ansässigen Gruppe China Labour Watch sind bei Auseinandersetzungen mit der Polizei in der Fabrik auch mehrere Arbeiter verletzt worden. Die Krise stellt alle Beteiligten vor neue Herausforderungen: Die Beschäftigten stellen höhere Ansprüche an ihre Arbeitgeber. Diese kämpfen wiederum mit steigenden Kosten und – als Folge der Finanzkrise – mit sinkenden Exporten.

http://derstandard.at/1323222448380/Streik-in-Shanghai-Sand-im-Getriebe-der-Weltwerkbank?sap=2&_slideNumber=1&_seite=

http://www.chinalaborwatch.org/news/new-400.html

Shenzhen Workers Strike Again

1,000 Workers Go on Strike at Hailiang Memory Equipment Company to Protest Loss of Seniority.

December 7th, 2011 –From 11 PM on December 4th,  1,000 workers at a hard drive factory in Shenzhen, Guangdong have been on strike. They are protesting the factory’s decision to reset everyone’s seniority to zero years after the factory was sold to another business. Workers have stated that they want the factory to provide compensation depending on each worker’s previous length of service.  Workers have raised banners on the square in front of the factory reading “We Also Know Our Rights” and “Japanese Companies Shamelessly Bully Chinese Workers,” and have blockaded the factory gates.

The strike occurred at the Hailiang Memory Equipment Company’s factory in the Great Wall Industrial Park, which is in Shenzhen’s Nanshan Technological Development District.  The factory is a subsidiary of Hitachi’s computer memory division. This year, Hitachi decided to sell Hailiang to Western Digital and simultaneously reset the workers’ seniority calculations, effectively making them all new hires. Levels of seniority have an influence on salary and compensation upon termination of workers’ contracts.  Needless to say, workers at the factory were dissatisfied with the handling of the sale and met to discuss going on strike to demand that management give them fair compensation for the reset of their seniority.

According to a worker who participated in the strike, there had already been tension between the factory management and their workers and the factory’s sale was only a trigger. The base monthly salary for new workers is only $228, which increases to $260 after 6 months. In recent years, although the basic salary of the workers have been increased from even lower wages, management cancelled the transportation and meal allowance, extended the probationary period of worker contracts, limited the overtime hours each person could work and often withheld workers’ overtime salaries. Therefore, workers’ real income had not increased, making workers increasingly unhappy with the management.

This is not the first time that this dissatisfaction has led to the Hailiang workers taking action. In 2007, to protest the factory withholding overtime compensation, over 1,000 workers went on strike and assembled on Shennan Avenue, disrupting traffic. The crowd was eventually dispersed by more than 100 police officers.

As of press time, the strike is currently ongoing.  The workers and the management are still negotiating with each other. Neither side has resorted to the use of force, and the factory has been providing food and water to the striking workers.

Executive Director of China Labor Watch Li Qiang believes that this strike, along with other recent labor unrest throughout China, reflects a problem in factories’ relationships with their workers. Li points out that Chinese corporations and their foreign ownership rarely consult workers before making decisions. When there are strikes, corporations usually choose to pressure the local government to force workers to stop striking as soon as possible, rather than negotiate with the strikers. This kind of resolution does not solve the problems that caused the workers to strike and the resentment created by government action merely triggers more strikes and protests in the future.

Workers are currently more aware of their rights and how to protect them than they have been in the past. They have also learned how to organize themselves to take collective action. Li believes that the key to resolving the existing tension among workers, corporations and the government is for corporations and the government to listen to workers’ demands, get a sense of what they need, and grant them the right to collectively bargain for redress. We call on corporations to bring their workers into the decision-making process. Chinese workers should be able to represent themselves in their factories.

About China Labor Watch:

Founded in 2000, China Labor Watch is an independent not-for-profit organization. In the past ten years, CLW has collaborated with unions, labor organizations and the media to conduct a series of in-depth assessments of factories in China that produce toys, bikes, shoes, furniture, clothing, and electronics for some of the U.S.’s largest companies.CLW’s New York office creates reports from these investigations, educates the international community on supply chain labor issues, and pressures corporations to improve conditions for workers.

Meanwhile, CLW’s Shenzhen office works closely with local factories and serves migrant workers in Guangdong Province through several programs. These include the Free Legal Consultation Hotline Program, community training in collective bargaining, and the Train the Trainer Program to enhance the capacity of local labor movements.

Contact:
Li Qiang

E-Mail: clw@chinalaborwatch.org

Phone: +001             212-244-4049
147 W 35th Street , STE 406

New York, NY 10001

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/China_Labor_Watch

Slowakische Spitäler wegen Ärztestreiks vor Kollaps

(sda/dpa) Der massivste Ärztestreik in der Geschichte der Slowakei hat das Gesundheitswesen des Landes am Freitag an den Rand des Zusammenbruchs gebracht. Mit dem Streik wehren sich die Mediziner gegen ihre Zwangsverpflichtung.

Die Regierung hatte schon am Dienstag den Notstand ausgerufen, um Ärzte unter Strafandrohung zur Arbeit zwingen zu können. Es hatten nämlich mehr als 2400 Ärzte zu Ende November gekündigt, um gegen niedrige Bezahlung und schlechte Arbeitsbedingungen zu protestieren. Slowakische Spitalärzte verdienen im Schnitt 1600 Euro pro Monat.

Die Ärztegewerkschaft LOZ blieb hart und forderte die Regierung am Freitag zum Nachgeben auf, um eine Gefährdung von Leben und Gesundheit der Bürger abzuwenden.

Vor allem die Kinderabteilungen sowie Anästhesiologie, Chirurgie und Gynäkologie seien bereits in mehreren Spitälern «kollabiert», teilte die Ärztevertretung auf ihrer Internet-Protestsete mit. Bis Freitag verweigerten nach Angaben des Gesundheitsministeriums noch 1200 der rund 7000 staatlichen Spitalärzte die Arbeit. Die Regierung bat auch die Nachbarstaaten um Hilfe

In Shanghai haben rund 200 Arbeiter einer Firma für Elektroteile ihren Streik fortgesetzt. Sie protestieren gegen die Pläne der Firmeneigentümer in Singapur, die Fabrik an den Stadtrand zu verlegen. Dies, so die Arbeiter, sei nur ein Vorwand, um die zu entlassen.

“Seit wir nach NanHui umziehen sollen, haben sie uns nichts gegeben. Jetzt demonstrieren wir hier statt zu arbeiten. Sie sagen, sie haben hier keine Arbeit für uns und wir seien automatisch entlassen”, klagt Frau Wang.

Bei Auseinandersetzungen mit der Polizei in der Fabrik wurden mehrere Arbeiter verletzt. In China ist es zuletzt häufiger zu Arbeitskämpfen gekommen. Die regierenden Kommunisten befürchten, dass anhaltende Proteste die Autorität der Führung untergraben. Die chinesischen Beschäftigten werden selbstbewusster und stellen höhere Ansprüche an ihre Arbeitgeber.

http://de.euronews.net/2011/12/02/streikende-arbeiter-verunsichern-chinas-kp/

A
then (dpa) – Das pleitebedrohte Griechenland ist erneut massiv von Streiks betroffen. Bis zum Donnerstag sollen die Arbeitskampfmaßnahmen einen neuen Höhepunkt erreichen: Dann wollen Staatsbedienstete im großen Stil die Arbeit niederlegen.

Gerichte, Ministerien und Schulen sollen geschlossen bleiben, Fähren nicht ablegen. Busse und Bahnen in Athen und der nordgriechischen Hafenstadt Thessaloniki sollen für mehrere Stunden bestreikt werden. Auch die Ärzte wollen streiken und nur Notfälle behandeln. Um die Mittagszeit am Donnerstag sind Kundgebungen und Demonstrationen geplant.

Im privaten Sektor sind umfangreiche Streiks geplant. Journalisten traten bereits am Mittwoch in einen 24-stündigen Streik. Im Radio und Fernsehen gab es keine Nachrichtensendungen. Am Donnerstag werden keine Zeitungen erscheinen. Der Flugverkehr wird anscheinend von diesem Streik nicht betroffen sein. Wie ein Sprecher der Fluglotsengewerkschaft und das Pressebüro des Flughafens Athen der Nachrichtenagentur dpa sagten, sei kein Streik der Fluglotsen geplant.

Die Gewerkschaften wenden sich gegen die massiven Kürzungen der Gehälter und gegen Entlassungen – diese Maßnahmen würgten die griechische Wirtschaft ab. Mehr als 18 Prozent der Bevölkerung ist ohne Arbeit. Die Gewerkschaftsverbände ADEDY und GSEE gehen davon aus, dass der Anteil steigt. Die Euro-Finanzminister gaben am Dienstag die nächste Kredittranche für Griechenland frei.

Cambodian Workers for U.S. Brands Stage Strike

Workers at a Cambodian garment factory that produces clothing for major U.S. retailers have gone on strike over the suspension of their union representatives. The Workers Friendship Union Federation says the strike will continue until the three union representatives are re-instated. The factory produces garments for U.S. brands Gap, JC Penny and Old Navy.

http://www.democracynow.org/2011/11/30/headlines#11

Protest gegen Sparmaßnahmen

Großbritannien – 24 Stunden im Streik

In Großbritannien hat der größte Streik im öffentlichen Dienst seit mehr als 30 Jahren begonnen. Insgesamt sind gut zwei Millionen Beschäftigte aufgerufen, aus Protest gegen Sparmaßnahmen und Rentenkürzungen die Arbeit niederzulegen.

Krankenschwestern, Rettungssanitäter und Mitarbeiter öffentlicher Verkehrseinrichtungen gehörten zu den Ersten, die bereits ab Mitternacht die Arbeit niederlegten.

Streikender in London (Foto: Reuters)Großansicht des BildesEin streikender vor der City Hall: „Jeder verdient eine angemessene Pension“Gewerkschafter bereiten Streikplakate vor. (Foto: AFP)Großansicht des BildesGut präpariert: Gewerkschafter bereiten Plakate und Ballons für den Protesttag vor.

Verspätungen bei Bussen, Zügen und Flügen

Als Auswirkungen wird mit massiven Behinderungen im Nah- und Fernverkehr gerechnet. Am Morgen hielten sich die Einschränkungen laut Medienberichten noch in Grenzen.

Auch an Europas größtem Flughafen London-Heathrow dürfte es zu Verspätungen kommen. Dort streikt das Abfertigungspersonal an der Passkontrolle. Der Flughafen hatte die Gesellschaften gebeten, ihre Flugzeuge nicht voll zu besetzen, um den Andrang bei der Passkontrolle zu mildern. Wie die BBC berichtete, waren morgens rund zwei Drittel der Schalter besetzt. Insgesamt werde über den Tag mit 20.000 Passagieren weniger gerechnet.

  • Streik im öffentlichen Dienst gegen Sparprogramm
    tagesschau 15:00 Uhr, 30.11.2011 [Sonia Kennebeck, ARD London]
  • intern Download der Videodatei
    •  
    •  
    •  
    •  

Zudem bleiben voraussichtlich bis zu 90 Prozent der Schulen geschlossen, das heißt für fünf Millionen Kinder fällt der Unterricht aus. Auch die Müllabfuhr wird bestreikt.

Audio: Größter Streiktag seit Jahrzehnten in Großbritannien

00:00:00   00:00:00
00:00:00   00:00:00

AudioJochen Spengler, DLR/DLF-Hörfunkstudio London30.11.2011 11:10 | 4’00

  • Download Download der Audiodatei:

Protest gegen ein Jahr länger arbeiten

Die Gewerkschaften kämpfen dagegen, dass die Mitarbeiter des öffentlichen Dienstes künftig ein Jahr länger auf den Ruhestand warten müssen und mehr in die Rentenkassen einzahlen sollen. Die Regierung wirft ihnen vor, damit in wirtschaftlich schweren Zeiten unnötig weitere Probleme zu verursachen.

Nach Ansicht von Großbritanniens Finanzminister George Osborne werden die Streiks nichts bringen. Es sei einfach kein zusätzliches Geld zu verteilen. „Dieses Land muss einige harte Maßnahmen treffen, um mit seinen Schulden fertig zu werden“, erklärte Osborne. Er forderte die Gewerkschaften auf, an den Verhandlungstisch zurückzukehren.

Osborne prognostiziert harte Jahre

George Osborne (Foto: dpa)Großansicht des BildesStimmt die Briten auf düstere Wirtschaftsaussichten ein: Finanzminister OsborneBereits tags zuvor hatte Osborne in seinem Herbst-Statement harte Jahre mit geringem Wirtschaftswachstum für das Königreich angekündigt. Im laufenden Haushaltsjahr 2011/2012 müssten 127 Milliarden Pfund (149 Milliarden Euro) neue Schulden aufgenommen werden.

Frühestens 2015 können den Zahlen zufolge die Maastricht-Kriterien der EU zur Staatsverschuldung wieder erfüllt werden.

Parallel dazu gab das Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) bekannt, dass bis 2017 im öffentlichen Dienst 710.000 Jobs abgebaut sein würden. Ursprünglich war ein Stellenabbau von 400.000 vorausgesagt worden.

http://www.tagesschau.de/wirtschaft/streik250.html

 

In Großbritannien hat in der Nacht ein massiver Streik im öffentlichen Dienst begonnen. Von ihm betroffen sind Krankenhäuser, öffentliche Verkehrsmittel und Flughäfen. In Heathrow wird mit zahlreichen Verspätungen gerechnet. Bis zu zwei Millionen Beschäftigte werden die Arbeit niederlegen, um gegen Rentenkürzungen zu protestieren.

Die Gewerkschafterin Lucy Moreton der “Immigration Services Union” erklärte, den Mitgliedern bliebe keine Wahl. Für ihre Gewerkschaft sei es der erste Steik seit dreißig Jahren. Man bedauere den Schritt, niemand wolle streiken. Allerdings hätten sie sich vorher kein Gehör verschaffen können.

Die Türen in fast 90 Prozent der Schulen in England, Schottland und Wales werden an diesem Mittwoch geschlossen bleiben. Auch die Müllabfuhr will sich am Streik beteiligen. Im ganzen Land sind etwa tausend Demonstrationen geplant.

Mit dem Schritt protestieren die Beschäftigten des öffentlichen Dienstes dagegen, dass sie künftig länger arbeiten müssen, um mehr in die Rentenkassen zu zahlen.

Der Streiktag könnte die britische Wirtschaft nach Angaben der Regierung fast 600 Millionen Euro kosten – die Gewerkschaften gehen von einem geringeren Schaden aus.

 

http://de.euronews.net/2011/11/30/grossbritannien-vor-groesstem-streik-seit-30-jahren/

Day of strikes as millions heed unions‘ call to fight pension cuts
• Disruption across UK as many services come to virtual halt
• Airports, schools, rail services and hospitals affected
• Reform of public sector pensions is at heart of dispute

Severin Carrell, Dan Milmo, Alan Travis and Nick Hopkins · 30/11/2011 · guardian.co.uk
Read by 88 people including:
Remove from timeline

Strikers outside Birmingham Women’s hospital at midnight as public sector unions begin action across the UK to oppose pension cuts. Photograph: David Jones/PA

The UK is experiencing the worst disruption to services in decades on Wednesday as more than 2 million public sector workers stage a nationwide strike, closing schools and bringing councils and hospitals to a virtual standstill.

The strike by more than 30 unions over cuts to public sector pensions started at midnight, leading to the closure of most state schools; cancellation of refuse collections; rail service and tunnel closures; the postponement of thousands of non-emergency hospital operations; and delays at airports and ferry terminals.

The TUC said it was the biggest stoppage in more than 30 years and was comparable to the last mass strike by 1.5 million workers in 1979. Hundreds of marches and rallies are due to take place in cities and towns across the country.

Pickets began to form before dawn at many hospitals, Whitehall departments, ports and colleges.

The strikes have been called over government plans to overhaul pensions for all public sector workers, by cutting employer contributions, increasing personal contributions and, it emerged on Tuesday, increasing the state retirement age to 67 in 2026, eight years earlier than originally planned.

Union leaders were further enraged after George Osborne announced that as well as a public sector pay freeze for most until 2013, public sector workers‘ pay rises would be capped at 1% for the two years after that.

In Scotland an estimated 300,000 public sector workers are expected to strike, with every school due to be affected after Scottish headteachers voted to stop work for the first time.

The UK Border Agency is braced for severe queues at major airports after learning that staffing levels at passport desks will be „severely below“ 50% despite a successful appeal for security-cleared civil servants to volunteer.

„We will have the bare minimum to run a bare minimum service,“ said a Whitehall insider. Many major public buildings and sites, including every port, most colleges, libraries, the Scottish parliament, major accident and emergency hospitals, ports and the Metro urban light railway around Newcastle and Sunderland will be picketed.

At Holyrood, Scottish government ministers and MSPs in the ruling SNP, the Liberal Democrats and Tories are expected to cross picket lines to stage a debate on public pensions; Labour and Scottish Green party MSPs will join the protesters.

Here are some of the actions across the country:

• In London up to 2,000 schools will be shut or affected, and ambulance crews will strike, there will be pickets in Whitehall, at universities, hospitals and a TUC regional march through the city from Lincoln’s Inn Fields to the embankment.

• In Scotland union leaders including Rodney Bickerstaff, general secretary of Unison, will march through central Edinburgh to a mass rally outside the Scottish parliament, with protests at Edinburgh castle, a major march and rally attended by Scottish union leaders in Glasgow, where civil servants will picket MoD and tax offices. There will be marches and protests in Dundee, Inverness and Aberdeen.

• In southern and south-west England and Wales unions will hold marches and rallies in towns and cities including Brighton, Southampton, Bristol and Exeter, while a New Orleans-style marching band will lead a march through Cardiff.

• In the north-west up to 25 Cumbrian schools may open, the Mersey tunnel is expected to be closed, while in Liverpool protesters will be urged to sound car horns, blow vuvuzela horns, clap and shout at 1pm in an action dubbed „One Noise at One“.

• In the Midlands union general secretaries including the TUC leader Brendam Barber and Dave Prentis of Unison will lead a rally at the Birmingham Indoor Arena, while marches will be held in Nottingham.

• In the north-east of England, Metro services will be severely hit and the RMT rail union leader Bob Crow will address a rally.

• In northern England marches are due to be staged in Manchester, Bradford, Leeds and Sheffield.

• In Northern Ireland there will be no train or public bus services, Belfast’s passport office will be closed along with leisure centres and schools. The main march will be through central Belfast.

The TUC said the strike would also include tens of thousands of border agency staff, probation officers, radiographers, librarians, job centre staff, courts staff, social workers, refuse collectors, midwives, road sweepers, cleaners, school meals staff, paramedics, tax inspectors, customs officers, passport office staff, police civilian staff, driving test examiners, patent officers, and health and safety inspectors.

Unions and employers have struck local deals to avoid disruption to emergency operations and essential medical services at hospitals, mental health units and residential care units for children. Emergency rotas have been introduced by mental health social workers with union agreement.

The Prospect union has exempted staff from strike action who work in 100 essential defence posts, including intelligence analyst posts at British bases in Afghanistan and civil servants supplying frontline troops.

Steve Jary, the national secretary of Prospect, which represents thousands of MoD staff, said: „These people are not the Whitehall bureaucrats of popular imagination. It is ironic that this important work by staff who risk their own lives in supporting the UK’s armed forces only comes to light in a situation like the industrial action.“

Dean Royles, the director of the NHS Employers organisation, which represents NHS trusts in England and Wales, said the unions had agreed to protect emergency services but he warned patients they might still experience significant delays that could spill over into Thursday.

„The absolute priority of everyone in the NHS must be to ensure that patients are safe and we avoid unnecessary distress too patients,“ he said. „We believe robust plans will be in place for the people who need urgent care but those needing non-urgent care may experiences delays.“

The Local Government Association, which represents English and Welsh councils, said it was „working tirelessly“ to minimise disruption to essential services, and to protect services for the elderly, vulnerable and young. Social workers were operating emergency rotas, children’s residential centres were being staffed as fully as possible and service updates would be posted on council websites.

Michael Gove blames strike action on ‚militants itching for a fight‘

Minister hints at imposing longer notice on walkouts, and predicts 90% of schools will shut because of strike

reddit this
Jeevan Vasagar,  Dan Milmo and  Nicholas Watt
The Guardian, Tuesday 29 November 2011
Article history

Michael Gove suggests that Britain’s strike laws need reforming. Link to this video

Michael Gove, the education secretary, has warned that striking workers may be forced to give employers more notice of any intention to take industrial action, and he termed some union leaders as „militants itching for a fight“.

With the rhetoric toughened on both sides before Wednesday’s mass walkout, the leader of Britain’s largest public sector union warned that a „rolling programme“ of strikes would be agreed for the new year.

About 2.6 million workers from 30 unions have been balloted on industrial action, with an estimated 750,000 voting in favour.

Trades unions are contesting a series of pension reforms, including a rise in annual contributions to £2.8bn by 2014-15, starting with an increase of £1.1bn next year, followed by £1.1bn and then £0.6bn in the following two years.

Gove said: „One of my concerns is that you do not have to give notice directly to your employer that you will go on strike. You need simply to inform them on the day. Contingency planning is made more difficult because of that.“

The minister said it was „unfair and unrealistic“ to expect taxpayers to cover the growing shortfall between employees‘ contributions and pension payments.

In a speech to the Policy Exchange thinktank, Gove anticipated that more than 90% of schools would close, forcing tens of thousands of parents to „scrabble around“ for childcare.

„On Wednesday TUC leaders will call on their members to bring Britain to a halt. Among those union leaders are people who fight hard for their members, and whom I respect. But there are also hardliners – militants itching for a fight.

„They want families to be inconvenienced. They want mothers to give up a day’s work, or to pay for expensive childcare, because schools will be closed. They want teachers and other public sector workers to lose a day’s pay in the runup to Christmas. They want scenes of industrial strife on our TV screens, they want to make economic recovery harder, they want to provide a platform for confrontation, just when we all need to pull together.“

Dave Prentis, general secretary of Unison, dismissed Gove’s criticism as „absolute nonsense“.

He said: „The action will go ahead. There is absolutely no chance whatsoever of any deal over the next couple of days.“ Prentis and other union leaders have described the rises as an arbitrary „tax“ that will help pay down the deficit but do nothing to make the four pension schemes – in the sectors of health, education, civil service and local government – sustainable.

Unions are also objecting, via a court case, to a change in the uprating of pensions by switching from the retail price index (RPI) rate of inflation to the less buoyant consumer price index (CPI) rate.

The government wants these changes to come into effect by 2015, but Prentis warned that the government was asking for „far, far too much“.

The Unison leader said that talks with the government were likely to yield a deal only in outline, at best, by the end of the year, because of the scale of the reforms that Francis Maude, the cabinet secretary, and Danny Alexander, the chief secretary to the Treasury, were trying to implement.

Prentis added that further action would be discussed with the 22 other unions affiliated to the Trades Union Congress. Asked what form the next wave of strike action could take, the Unison head said the walkouts could be grouped into a programme of protests split into regions or employment groups.

Unison members in Southampton have teamed up with fellow council employees affiliated to Unite to stage waves of strikes affecting different services each time, from rubbish collection to port administration and social work.

Unison claims that its membership applications had surged by 126% over the past month, compared with the same period last year.

He added that the government’s position was untenable in the face of members‘ views: „It is too much to ask, and we believe that the action that is being taken on Wednesday is the only way that public service workers can show to our communities what they are worth.“

David Cameron chaired a civil contingencies meeting to ensure the government is prepared. As the government confirmed that it started making contingency plans in April to staff Britain’s border, Downing Street said the prime minister convened meeting to assure himself adequate precautions had been taken. „We need to try and make an assessment [of Wednesday] in order to work through our contingency plans,“ a spokesman said. „Part of that is working with different bits of the public sector to make sure people who are affected are aware of likely disruption, aware of whether or not their school is likely to be closed and so on.“

Senior officials will meet on Wednesday, probably in the Cabinet Office Briefing Room (COBR), to co-ordinate the response. It will focus on ensuring the government issues reliable information about which public services are operating and which are closed.

In Manchester, Cameron said: „I deeply regret that the strikes are going ahead. It’ll be inconvenient for many families with children who find their schools are shut. It’ll be inconvenient for travellers who want to either leave or get into the UK. And I don’t think these strikes will achieve anything, I don’t think they’ll change anything, I don’t think they’ll improve anything.

„We’ve made a very fair offer to public sector workers in terms of giving them pensions that are more generous than anything available in the private sector. We have to accept the simple fact that people are living longer, and that in order to have affordable pension schemes they have to contribute a little bit more and retire a little later.

„The strikes will put a lot of families at a huge inconvenience, but the government will go on and do the right thing to mitigate the effects.“

Lord Henley, the Home Office minister, said the government had started preparing in April for a strike by border staff. „We started training additional staff in contingency in April and adequate resources are now available.“ Any staff deployed on the frontline will have received training required to operate effectively. Arriving passengers will remain subject to checks at the border by appropriately trained staff.“

Asked after the speech who he identified as a militant, Gove said he would not use that description for any teaching union leader.

„You have only got to look at the words of Len McCluskey in the Guardian today, consider the conduct of Mark Serwotka throughout this dispute or look at the political record of Mr Andrew Murray, who is a lead official in Unite, to recognise that ‚militant‘ is a badge that fits for all those three.“

In his speech he urged teachers to „pause and reflect“ before joining the walkouts.

„This is a good deal – one that millions in the private sector envy.

„This is a difficult time – when we all have to reflect on the fact that we’re all in this together.“

But by Dave Prentis, the general secretary of Unison. He said on Monday: „The action will go ahead. There is absolutely no chance whatsoever of any deal over the next couple of days.“

Gove, in his thinktank address, spoke of his own experience as a journalist involved in a strike called by union leaders to „prove a point“.

„I lost my job. So did more than 100 others. I was lucky – young, unmarried, without a mortgage. I got another job soon enough.

„Many others didn’t. They never worked again in the profession they loved. And the deal we were offered before the strike never improved.“

Gove warned that public sector pensions reform is necessary as everyone is living longer – especially teachers.

„In comparison to the UK average, figures for teachers show even greater life expectancy. And between 2004 and 2010 the number of teachers working beyond 60 increased from 9,909 to 31,572.“

Gove said that he was not asking teachers to work until they were 68. Instead, while the thegovernment is proposing that teachers‘ pension age should be raised to 68, teachers will be able to take their pension at any age from 55 to 75.

Contingency plans to cope with strike

Borders

Heathrow, Britain’s busiest international airport, has lost faith in the UK Border Agency’s contingency plan and asked airlines to switch tens of thousands of passengers to inbound flights on alternative dates. The Home Office has been scouring the civil service for volunteers to work in its passport control booths, but at Heathrow staff levels are expected to be 50% below normal. Airlines are being asked to cut capacity on arriving international flights by half, or immigration halls will not be able to process the 60,000 passengers expected on the day.

Health

Care for emergency and urgent patients, including A&E and maternity, will be given priority under an agreement between unions and NHS chiefs. Patient safety will also be protected. Services for cancer patients and those on kidney dialysis are expected to carry on as normal.

Civil service

The Cabinet Office says it expects disruption in Whitehall departments to be „limited“ as departments  gegen deredeploy staff to fill gaps and focus on high-priority work. „All core functions will continue to be delivered,“ it said.

Local government

Contingencies vary across the more than 300 councils in England and Wales, with Cornwall hoping to keep libraries open, and Newcastle’s office for registering deaths staying open. Privatised services have more chances of staying open. Many councils have agreed with unions to run emergency cover for vital areas such as social care.

Education

Almost 90% of schools and colleges in England and Wales are expected to close, as walkouts by teachers, headteachers and teaching assistants leave unpluggable gaps. Schools can, in theory, use background-checked volunteers who regularly help out, but not supply teachers. Dan Milmo

19. November 2011, 13:38, NZZ Online

Tausende Arbeiter in chinesischer Schuhfabrik im Streik

Protest gegen Kündigungen und Lohnkürzungen

Aus Protest gegen Kündigungen und Lohnkürzungen sind tausende Arbeiter einer Fabrik im Süden Chinas in einen Streik getreten. Dabei kam es nach Angaben der in New York ansässigen Organisation China Labor Watch zu heftigen Zusammenstössen mit der Polizei.

(sda/afp) Laut der Organisation China Labor Watch sind aus Protest gegen Kündigungen und Lohnkürzungen tausende Arbeiter einer Fabrik im Süden Chinas in einen Streik getreten.

Dutzende Menschen wurden demnach verletzt, als die Polizei versuchte, die Blockade der Fabrik und einer Strasse in der Nähe der Stadt Dongguan in der Provinz Guangdong zu brechen. An dem Streik in der Fabrik, die unter anderem Schuhe für Nike und Adidas herstellt, beteiligten sich mehr als 7000 Menschen.

Der Protest richtete sich gegen die Streichung von Bonuszahlungen und ein Verbot von Überstunden und wurde angeheizt von der Kündigungen von 18 Managern. China Labor Watch zufolge sehen die Arbeiter die Entlassung von Führungspersonal als Vorbereitung für die Verlegung ihrer Fabrik.

Einer der gekündigten Manager sagte der Zeitung «China Business News», seine Entlassung sei Teil eines Plans, die Produktion in die nördliche Provinz Jiangxi zu verlegen.

Verbot von Überstunden

Besonders hart trifft die Arbeiter das Verbot von Überstunden. «Unser monatliches Grundgehalt beträgt nur 1100 Yuan (rund 159 Franken) und wir verdienen unser Taschengeld mit Überstunden», sagte eine Arbeiterin der «Yangcheng Evening News». Dem Bericht zufolge forderten die Behörden die Manager auf, die Streichung der Überstunden wieder aufzuheben.

In der Provinz Guangdong sind in diesem Jahr zahlreiche Proteste gegen soziale Ungerechtigkeit aufgekommen. Im September griffen Demonstranten eine Polizeistation an, nachdem Gerüchten zufolge Polizisten ein Kind getötet hatten.

http://www.nzz.ch/nachrichten/politik/international/tausende_arbeiter_in_chinesischer_schuhfabrik_in_streik_getreten_1.13360555.html