Friday, 4 November 2011

Solidarity with Iranian workers - from Brazil

Brazilian journalist Bruno Mascarenhas' solidarity message with Iranian workers.

Every workers protest is very important, because it is a group that organizes itself because it isn’t satisfied, and this is the exact reason they are protesting.  But it’s very difficult to do this under a dictatorship.  It becomes impossible.   

In Brazil, at the end of the 1970s, more or less during the Islamic Revolution in Iran, Brazil was under a dictatorship, but in the metallurgical unions of the countryside in the ABC Region (a large industrial region in the state of Sao Paulo) led a big movement in which it stopped sixty or eighty thousand workers, who halted their activities, and didn’t produce one single car, they produced nothing in this region, and it was a big problem for the government, a serious problem.  The workers actually brought the industry to a halt.  The government needed to cede, and ended up giving money to the companies to pay the costs of the workers, they gave a part of the pay raise the workers were asking for, and the workers won many important battles.   

Today, the Brazilian worker has more rights and privileges and has won more battles thanks to these metallurgical protests in the ABC Region.  In Iran, I think it’s hard, it’s very hard.  I think that the Iranian union oil workers, they have problems.  The dictatorship is so rigid and strong, and I am afraid that they won’t manage to get their rights.  I want that workers manage to get their rights in all parts of the world.  Outside of Brazil, what can I do, I can spread the words of solidarity.  I am in solidarity with Iranian workers.  People who work and produce need dignity, a good home, the family has to live well, it’s a question of quality of life, if you work, you have to have a fair exchange, you have to have a decent salary.  In the 1970s/1980s, here in Sao Paulo when there were the big metallurgical union movements in the ABC Region, a good part of the workers were living in favelas (slums), people ate poorly, they had a poor quality of life.  Today,  most metallurgical workers live with dignity.

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