Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Global Labour Movement Moves to Support Maruti Workers – Online!

For immediate release - 19 October 2011

At the request of the Maruti workers’ union and the International Metalworkers Federation a global mobilization of solidarity for the striking workers is taking place online.

Workers around the world are being organized to send protest e-mails to Maruti-Suziki’s Managing Director demanding that the company immediately cease violating basic labour rights at its factory in Haryana.  This effort is only the second such involving an Indian dispute.  In just a few days the campaign has already generated thousands of messages from supporters in 105 countries.

The campaign is being mounted using the services of LabourStart, the global labour movement’s online news and campaigns website.

Eric Lee, LabourStart’s Founding Editor and Webmaster, noted that “This is one of the fastest-growing campaigns we have mounted in our 13-year history.  The struggle these workers face, the duplicity of their employer, and the collusion of the Haryana government was already well-known when the violence began.  Even before our campaign started these workers had captured the imagination of trade unionists around the world.”

“Maruti-Suziki and the Haryana Labour Department are dragging India’s name through the mud.  Our country’s reputation is being damaged around the world as the violations of basic labour rights become widely-known.” Says Mahesh Upadhyaya, LabourStart’s senior correspondent in India  “And Suzuki is doing serious damage to its brand by being associated with the thuggery taking place at the MSIL factory.”

Join the campaign HERE.

LabourStart is a global network of almost 1000 trade unionists around the world.  Founded in 1998 in London UK and centred on, LabourStart collects and makes available labour news from around the world in 27 languages.  It also provides a variety of internet-related services to trade unions, including an online campaigning service using e-mail and social media platforms.  

Contacts:     Eric Lee, Editor,
        Mahesh Upadhyaya, LabourStart

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Steve Jobs is Dead

I'm growing quite cranky with the Steve Jobs hagiographies passing as comment and such. Almost all that I have seen are about his legacy as far as electronics consumers in the North are concerned.

At the Southern end of Apple's supply chain? Child labour, suicidal sweatshop workers, unsafe working conditions and Jobs-dictated downward pressure on wages and working conditions in an effort to keep production costs down. A saint? Uh-huh. Sure he was: thanks to Apple's marketting folks.

Paul Hardy (SIPTU, Ireland) has done a nice job of dissecting the goofy surge of affection for the departed. See his blog post HERE.

And for a taste of what it was like to work at Apple when Jobs was at the helm, see the Gawker's take HERE.