Popular Posts

۱۳۹۲ مهر ۵, جمعه

Difficult Work and Living Condition of Women Workers and Farmers

During the last two decades, with implementation of the economic programs of organizations such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, the living and work conditions of millions of urban and rural workers have constantly declined, and we have witnessed extreme poverty in the society. Among workers, exploitation of the women workers has been far more cruel and savage.

In a country where the cost of most items needed by the workers and toilers are almost the same as those in the European countries; while the monthly legal minimum wage is 487 thousand Tomans (3000 Tomans is approximately equivalent to one dollar), and “the real poverty line in the country is one million 500 thousand Tomans”; “even if the nature of their job is long-lasting”, 20 male and female workers of the Khomeini Hospital in Zabol, “have been hired with temporary contracts” with a180 thousand Tomans of monthly salary; and “in the last 16 months, they have not received salaries.”. In Zabol’s Textile Factory, except a few men, the manager generally hires women,…..and to cover his violations, once in a while he fires some of the workers.” Majority of the workers employed in this factory are not insured, and their monthly salary is “180 thousand Tomans”. Farm workers of Gilan province, “where most of them are woman….. are not covered by Social Welfare insurance”;  these workers “have no job security”, and if for whatever reason, “they become incapable of work, they have no other source of income.” These woman workers’ 6000 Tomans daily salary is approximately 2 dollars a day; and we can say, except in the Islamic Republic, one cannot find such an inhumane exploitation.   

While criticizing average 300 thousand Tomans monthly salary of Shiraz pharmacy personnel and lack of insurance coverage of majority personnel of the Province’s drugstores, Mr. Fagiry, President of the Shiraz’s drugstores Technical Workers’ Association said, “University’s combat program…. sends interns to work in pharmacies for 5 to 6 months….These interns’ unpaid work is threatening job security of the technical workers”. In other words, the unpaid 5 to 6 months work of interns, in addition to inhumane exploitation of the interns, is also used as a tool for exploitation of the employed work-force. While under the rule by force of the theocratic regime, for a month of grueling work, a woman worker receives 180 thousand Tomans of salary; as a toll for hiring technical personnel, Fars Province’ Pharmacy Association has made attendance in its two hour long training program mandatory; and charges 150 thousand Tomans for it. In addition, excluding small plants with less than ten workers from Labor Law coverage, has had devastating effect on the lives of the majority of women workers; and these days, the results of that are in front of us.  

On August 26, 2013, in a report in IANA, a member of the parliament’s Agriculture, Water and Natural Resources Commission indicated, “If today we are witnessing an extensive import of agricultural products, including rice and meat; where self-sufficiency in production of these items was possible; the reason for it is lack of implementation of the law.” When a woman worker receives a monthly salary of 180 thousand Tomans; and every day we witness tens of reports such as: “More than half of Hamadan’s dairy factories are closed”; “In one week the price of chicken increased by 9 percent…. In one year the price of tea and grains increased by 100 percent”; the important question becomes, are such reports the result of “lack of implementation of the law” by a few willful individuals?

As another example in connection with the devastating currency value oscillations, on June 6, 2013, Donyayeh Egtesad reported, “For some time, industries are not receiving “reference currency”; and because of that, the machinery and spare parts industries have to purchase their raw materials with currency bought in the open market…..With floating currency rates, certain individuals gain access to information and conditions for fraud becomes ripe”. Denial of reference currency to industries results in destruction of the national industries and millions of unemployed workers; floating currency rates provides “information to certain individuals”; now we have to see, for example who receives “reference currency”. On June 18, 2013, ISNA reported on “importing of 1200 containers of home appliance parts by ‘Import Mafia’….with an especial skd scheme”. These home appliance parts are put together in special economical regions of Syrjan and Salafchekan. Importing with the skd method, not only allows the importers to receive trade rate currency, but also lowers their tariffs to the producer level rates.” The report added, “With importing the parts, not only the country loses currency….country’s industries are….damaged irreversibly and ….. Iranian workers lose their jobs” as well. Or on August 15, 2013, stating that 50 percent of the tea plantations are in ruin, ILANA reported, “Using President of Tea Organization’s credit, some merchants are in India to purchase this farm product; while 10 to 15 thousand tons of internally produced tea are left unused in factories.”

In this regard, most of the woman farmers and workers have serious livelihood difficulties. Women farmers like other women workers are deprived of many of their rights, such as, wages proportional to their work, insurance coverage, etc. Supporting and presenting the country’s women toilers’ interests and demands, especially women workers and farmers, should be the priority of our country’s labor-union movement. Women workers and farmers have the right for wages and benefits equal to those of men, and an honorable life.