Turkish mint strike - your help needed
UNI is urging its affiliates and members of the public to write to the
Turkish Minister of Labour and Social Security in support of mint
workers after more than eight weeks of strike action.
The action began after management refused to recognise the shop stewards
and denied them access to their members and refused to consult with
them. The union is demandingfair wages, better health and safety
conditions and freedom from intimidation and humiliation by the
The strike has led to a shortage in official stamps used for passports,
driver’s licenses as well as stamps for alcohol and cigarettes. The
government has now directly intervened to break the strike. The
government has wielded its executive power by permitting the manufacture
of banderols in other companies contrary to the Turkish law.
This has prompted legal action from Basin-IS, who argue that the strike
breaking activities are forbidden by the Law on Collective Agreements
and Unions (No:6356) and that official banderols must, by law, be
printed in Darphane ve Damga Matbaasý. In order to regulate against the
dangers of illegal alcohol, companies cannot sell alcoholic products
without banderols. The decision to manufacture banderols in alternative
facilities is expected to lead to a rise in deaths related to illegal
The union has accused their employers of submitting unreasonable and
unrealistic proposals and attempting to intimidate unions into returning
to work. Despite the threats and intimidation the strike remains solid
and after meeting with strikers, union officials and committee members
last week, Basin-IS decided to continue with the strike.
Mint workers union Basin-IS said that the Ministry of Finance move
represents "an attempt to defeat the strike by using executive power”.
Mint workers are demanding that working conditions, and in particular
the lack of an adequate air-conditiong system, are improved and that
they are paid a fair salary of around 2000 Turkish Lira.
Snoddy from UNI Global Graphical & Packaging called on the
employers to immediately stop their strike breaking activities and to
enter into meaningful negotiations. He also urged UNI Global affiliates
around the world to give 100% support to Basin-IS.
Son 10 News