Athens, Greece – January 25 Starting January 16th, Greek metro workers went on strike against major cuts to their wages and benefits. The Greek government ordered an end to the strike, using police to break up pickets and demonstrations, and forcing workers back to work. But afterwards, other transportation workers including train drivers, bus drivers, trolley and light-rail operators all went on strike to support the metro workers and to mobilize against attacks to their own working conditions. The transportation workers have raised the stakes in the fight against their employers and the Greek government.
Shanghai, China – January 25 At Shinmei Electronic company, workers are forced to take bathroom breaks of no longer than two minutes. Workers who don’t return to work before two minutes is up are fined the equivalent of eight dollars. Workers at Shinmei went on strike on January 25, shutting down the factory and taking their bosses hostage. The strike ended the next day after police negotiated the bosses’ release and after they agreed to change the bathroom break rule.
Paris, France – January 16 Workers at the Peugot Citroen car plant in the north of Paris, have begun a strike against the planned layoffs of 8,000 workers. The strike began when 300 workers stopped work and occupied their section of the plant. Nearby workers from a Renault car plant, where 7,000 workers are threatened with layoffs, have also gone on strike. Together, striking workers have held joint demonstrations and are calling on the rest of the workers in France to join them in a fight against all layoffs and attacks.