Strike in Metal in Bizkaia, June 21, 2019: Fifth day of unemployment


Metal strike in Bizkaia


Firecrackers have been thrown and containers have been crossed along the route. The Ertzaintza has arrested one person for throwing objects and has identified three others.

The unions of the Metal sector –ELA, CCOO, LAB y UGT– have requested that the Biscayan Federation of Metal Companies (FVEM) and the Basque Government abandon the “police and judicial route”, while they have requested the “absolute release” of the worker detained this Friday during the demonstration held in Bilbao.

Thousands of protesters have toured this Friday the Gran Vía of the capital of Biscay, summoned by the unions of the Metal sector, during the fifth day of strike organized in defense of the renewal of the collective agreement. Along the way firecrackers have been thrown and containers have been crossed.

Likewise, in the vicinity of the Plaza Circular there have been charges against groups of protesters and the Ertzainas have stopped a person for throwing objects at the police and has been charged with the crime of attack against authority. Three others have been identified for public disorder at the beginning of the protest.

In a joint statement, the unions have indicated that the fifth strike has been a “resounding success”, although they have denounced “the decisions taken today by FVEM and by its collaborator, the Basque Government.”

“The Ertzaintza, starting in the morning pickets and especially in the Bilbao demonstration, has had an intimidating attitude, even stopping the demonstration in its midst, which has generated moments of tension,” they added.

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Unions: “The Ertzaintza has had an intimidating attitude, even stopping the demonstration in its midst”

The interventions of the Ertzaintza to clear the road for the protesters have been booed amid shouts of “less police, more negotiation”, while the scenes of greatest tension have taken place, mainly, in the queue of the demonstration, and as the police cordons advanced along the sidewalks and the sides of the march.

On the other hand, early in the morning, a group of pickets has come to the company Astilleros Murueta in Erandio preventing entry to the plant, for which the presence of the Ertzaintza has been requested, which has urged them to leave free passage and, in response to this requirement, they have enabled a space to allow entry.

The Bizkaia Metal Unions have described as “massive and majority“the follow-up of the fifth day of strike called in the sector to demand a” dignified “agreement. The ELA spokesman, Mikel Etxebarria, has indicated that the participation of this Friday has been “very similar” to Thursday, which the trade union centrals estimated at “80 or 85%”.

The union spokesperson stated that, for the fifth day, polygons in general are empty and production has stopped and we are happy for this other great follow-up because the people are strong and demand that FVEM accept the demands of the joint union platform. “

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In relation to the incidents recorded on Thursday, the ELA spokesperson reiterated that such incidents “must not have to do with the strike, but we also disapprove of certain disproportionate actions by the Ertzaintza because this is a union struggle in the that production has to be stopped and there have to be thousands of people on the streets. “

The Biscayan Federation of Metal Companies (FVEM) has affirmed that around 20% of the workers in the sector have seconded this Friday the second consecutive day of strike in the sector, the fifth since the mobilizations began to claim a “worthy bargain”.

Employer sources have stated that the provisional monitoring figures “follow the line” of those of this past Thursday. In the absence of offering a definitive data, with all the data of the companies collected, it has established support for the call at around 20%.

The same media have recalled that the unions “continue to maintain their position and have not yet moved from the platform presented at the time”, while the FVEM “has already made changes to its proposal.”

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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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