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On 4th June: Take to the streets! Make the bosses pay!

Whenever the FAU – Freie Arbeiterinnen und Arbeiter Union (Free Workers Union) Berlin gets involved in conflicts at a workplace, we tend to quickly be successful. The bosses’ wrongdoings are oftentimes beyond good and evil so that small actions can already lead to concessions on their side. Right now, however, we are stuck in a number of wage conflicts: eight of our Romanian colleagues have been exploited on the construction site of the “Mall of Berlin” and still, after two years of struggle, have not received any payment! The people responsible are hiding behind a chain of sub-contractors, trying to demoralize us with lengthy lawsuits.

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Another colleague has been tricked out of more than 1000 Euros of wages by a restaurant. This is very commonplace in the gastronomy sector. Yet, in this case the boss is not just reluctant to pay but has obtained an injunction against our Union. The FAU Berlin now is prohibited to make public demands from the company. Doing so might result in a penalty of 250 000 Euro or six months in jail. One of our comrades is already being investigated! Instead of paying the wages – a negligible sum of money for the company – he invests in lawyers and courts.

We are regularly targeted with such legal means to impede our activity. In 2010 our enemies went so far as to trying to prevent the FAU Berlin from officially calling itself a “Trade Union”. The bosses’ strategy is clear: They go out of their ways to silence a fighting Union! They want to make an example out of the colleagues, who demand their rights in order to single them out before other employees may follow them. They know that working people cannot afford a lawsuit. In the end, not everyone is equal in front of the law.

Well, too bad the bosses did not reckon with die FAU Berlin and our friends! As a solidary Union we fight with all means necessary until the end. We are counting, though, on support from outside. Show your solidarity with the colleagues in struggle and join the demonstration. An injury to one is an injury to all!

However, the attacks on trade union freedom are not only directed against FAU. They follow a similar pattern in other regions of Europe. In Barcelona, investigations have recently been taken on against our affiliated union CNT, which is suspected of "blackmail", "extortion", and "formation of a criminal association" because the CNT-unionists put up a self-organised fight against the precarious working conditions in the catering industry. And in the last days in France, where a whole legislative package is to be pushed through against our rights in the light of the state of emergency, the police stormed union bureaus of the CNT-F and injured and detained unionists.

 


No boss and no judge will silence us! Defend Union liberty!


Demonstration on Saturday, June 4th, 2 p.m. at Hackescher Markt

Stronger together

Click here to get to the FAU Berlin's English membership formThe FAU Berlin is an independent grassroots union. It is part of the German Free Workers' Union (FAU) federation. Join us, take part, get active.

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