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۱۳۹۳ مرداد ۳, جمعه

Economic Deregulation, Privatization and Workers’ Labor-Union Rights

Once again, with deceiving maneuvers, the Islamic Republic made continuation of its membership in the Managing Board of the International Labor Organization possible. Islamic Republic’s membership in the main Managing Board of this Organization is becoming possible, at a time that compared to other organizations, open discrimination against the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) is being imposed. With their membership in this Organization, Minister of Labor and representatives of the yellow and reactionary government organizations, fallaciously and for deceiving the country’s workers and the world’s public opinion (meaning the real and class-oriented labor-unions and progressive forces), speak of “solving the youth unemployment”, “employment” and such problems; where like positions of the people in the capitalist governments, and organizations and governments dependant on imperialism that think like them, is deceptive, false and simply a misleading maneuver. Rouhani government, based on the Islamic Republic’s general policies and the Resistance Economy of the Jurisconsult Guardian (substance of this Resistance Economy is privatization and connection with the world economy), concurrent with advertising on their membership in the Managing Board of the International Labor Organization and the government Minister’s invitation for re-opening of the ILO’s office in Tehran; with vigor and in cooperation with the Commerce House, meaning Iran’s big capitalists and Managers’ headquarter, the government is implementing the programs and policies dictated by the imperialist organizations, and destroying workers’ interests and job security in our country.

With the start of the second phase of the economic deregulation program, based on the International Monetary Fund and World Bank’s prescriptions, a set of plans proposed by the government and other Islamic Republic organizations, are considered for implementation. In conjunction with privatization, the economic deregulation plan which is intended for joining the World Trade Organization, are Islamic Republic and Hassan Rouhani government’s key economic plans at this juncture; which have had, and will have direct impact and consequences on workers’ and toiler’s lives and job security.

These programs are being compiled and implemented at a time when our country’s workers are denied of their legal labor-union rights and do not possess their independent unions, based and formed on correct class basis. During the government’s ceremonies on the occasion of the May Day, which was held in the twelve-thousand seat Freedom sports stadium, Hassan Rouhani indicated, “Workers are the spinal column of the country’s production…..government of Prudence and Hope… is determined to proclaim 2014 as the year of production growth and ending of economic recession,….formation of…. popular organizations and especial associations among workers to be free and without difficulty.” However, government’s action and the economic-social strategy is completely contrary to the working class and toilers’ interests; and one must call Rouhani and Minister of Labor Rabieih’s remarks and positions regarding the workers’ rights, as meaningless advertisement. One of the government’s plans for “production growth” is the economic deregulation for joining the World Trade Organization. One must ask Rouhani as the President: Regarding the economic deregulation plans and its consequences, has he asked for workers’ and the real labor organizations’ opinions; has he consulted them?! Why in all aspects, the Commerce House, as representative of the big capitalists and managers, is being consulted; and even they prepare and present the plans to the government; however, on the opposite side, not only labor-unions are not being consulted, but are brutally dealt with, and labor-union activists are detained and imprisoned. As examples, detention of the Union of Syndicate workers in this year’s May Day is in front of us! How the President can talk of “workers’ right to organize without difficulty”, where workers are denied of their right to strike; and all kinds of labor-union activities, according to the International Convention for Labor-Union Rights, ratified by the World Federation of Trade Unions, and the International Labor Organization’s conventions (Conventions 87-98) are repressed by security organizations; and labor activists, simply for trade-union activities, are detained and tortured. Programs such as the economic deregulation plans, free-market economy and privatization, threatens and destroys workers’ job security. The main goal of the economic deregulation and wage deregulation, which now is the government and the entire Islamic Republic’s goal, intends to prepare a cheap and obedient work-force for internal companies and especially the large foreign companies. When Iranian workers’ labor-union rights, in practice, and not in words only, are recognized and without conditions are respected and implemented, then Rouhani can speak of the “workers’ right to organize without difficulty.” According to the contents of the international conventions for labor-union rights, “Workers have the right to establish labor unions; join existing unions; and without requiring government or managers’ permission, participate in all labor-union activities.” In addition, in the International Convention for Labor Union Rights, it clearly has been stated, “At their work place or all other places, workers have the right to assemble, to discuss, and freely present their opinion on all issues and problems which concern them.”                    
In its third part, the International Convention on Labor Union Rights, ratified by the World Federation of Trade Unions – syndicates’ right for representing workers clearly states, “Labor unions have the right to defend all workers’ interests, and review, present opinion and interfere in all issues connected to the workers’ interests…..In all matters that involve workers, directly or indirectly, especially in drafting laws and regulations, workers’ syndicate organizations must be involved and consulted.”

In addition, regarding the right to strike, the Convention indicates, “The right to strike is the workers’ political right. Every worker, regardless of his or her profession, without impediment, has the right to resort to the weapon of strike.”

The question is, which one of these recognized laws, and laws mandatory to be implemented, are being respected in the Islamic Republic; where on the basis of those laws workers can “freely and without difficulty” organize?

Contrary to the government’s advertising, the Iranian workers’ and toilers’ basic labor-union rights are denied; and implementation of programs such as privatization, free-market economy and deregulation, destroys their interests and job security. Connecting the struggle against Islamic Republic’s social-economical programs with the demands for restoration of labor-union rights, is the essential task of the workers’ existing labor unions at the current period.

United Workers Everything

Isolated Workers Nothing