ESK will ask that the suicide of a worker in Azpeitia be considered a work accident


Work accident

OP | Eitb Media

A 20-year-old neighbor from Azpeitia took his own life in July, in the very company where he worked. He had stated that he “could not take it anymore” with his employment situation. The ESK union, the family and social agents affirm that the precariousness was decisive in the outcome.

ESK will take legal action in the social order by the suicide of a worker at the company where he was employed in Azpeitia in order to be considered a work accident and ensures that working conditions suffered “were decisive” in the decision.

ESK lawyer Fátima del Castillo, members of the Azpeitia Elkar-Ekin collective Imanol Agirre and Eneko Ibarguren, ESK spokesperson Iratxe Esnaola and Silvia Castillo, the mother of the deceased young man, have appeared this Tuesday at a press conference at the union headquarters in San Sebastián to explain the details of the case.

The events took place on July 30, 2021 when the young Luis Enrique Soriano, from 20 years, of Dominican origin and a resident of Azpeitia in the last three years, he took his life in the very workshop where he had worked since November 2018.

According to del Castillo, the union has the “assurance” that the company incurred various irregularities, as Ibarguren has also explained.

Elkar-ekin collected the testimony of the family a few days after the death of Soriano, who affirmed that the young man “the worked more hours than his share by contract “and worked 12 hours straight,”also on Saturdays, as well as many Sundays“.

Not only that, since, according to they assure, “did not enjoy vacation or at least not of all those that should “and” had to go to work when I was on sick leave due to covid, at night and alone. “They have also highlighted that the businessman deducted 300 euros from his salary to Soriano because a piece had gone wrong.

According to both Elkar-Ekin and ESK, the young man stated on more than one occasion to his surroundings that “I couldn’t take it anymore”, referring to the situation he was experiencing at work.

The lawyer has specified that the young man “lacked a psychiatric or psychological background” and “had a good relationship with his closest environment.” Nevertheless decided to “take his life in the workshop” about 9:30 p.m. on July 30, as recorded in the report of the preliminary proceedings opened in the court number 1 of Azpeitia, one hour, 9:30 p.m., in which “he was not meeting his schedule either” since his shift should have ended at 5:30 p.m.

The working environment, decisive

From the criminal point of view “it is clear that it is a suicide, although for the moment these preliminary proceedings have not been closed,” Castillo clarified.

For her part, ESK spokeswoman Iratxe Esnaola has remarked that she “has no doubt” that death “is an occupational accident” since, “beyond the fact that the event occurred in the workplace itself, the work environment experienced has been a “determining factor in the fatal outcome“.

Del Castillo has indicated that they are in contact with Osalan and the Labor Inspectorate of Gipuzkoa that “is making its reports after the appropriate investigations.” In addition, the union has ensured that it will carry out legal proceedings because it understands that “there is sufficient evidence,” he specified.

Esnaola recalled that occupational accidents have grown by 19% in the BAC but the Basque Government “has no intention of making prevention a matter of the first order.”

He pointed out that there are “hundreds of underpaid workers” at ERTE who “suffer from situations of harassment and intimidation” and work overtime without paying. Situations that are further aggravated in the case of women and younger workers and that “if, in addition, as is the case of Luis Enrique, they are migrant or racialized people, all this multiplies exponentially.”

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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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