Solidarity with the Workers of Natais popcorn factory in France! Exposed to hazardous substances, forced to work on precarious conditions, the workers tried to fight back. On Thursday, two former employees will be in court for supposedly "defaming" their former employer!
On Thursday, December 13, 2012, former workers from the Natais popcorn factory in Bézéril, France will go to trial for supposed „defamation” of their ex-employer, for talking about their working conditions on a blog.
Among the problems the workers faced was exposure to Diacetyl. This chemical can cause bronchitis obliterans, also known as „popcorn workers' lung”, or other serious respiratory illnesses. Diacetyl is a component of the artificial butter flavor used in microwave popcorn. Bronchitis obliterans is irreversible and can lead to death.
The workers at Natais popcorn factory are not even given masks to protect themselves from the vapors. They also must work in extreme heat. Around 80% of the people at the factory are temporary workers. The work is hard, people are sometimes forced to work on Sundays, the pay is bad.
There was even a strike at the factory. A year-end bonus was won, but then the union called off the strike. Some workers however tried to keep fighting. For trying to speak out against these conditions, a case was brought against 2 of the strikers, now former workers of the company.
We call on comrades around the world to support this case by sending an email to the company. email@example.com
Sample text: We demand an end to the repression of Natais workers and support their struggle for safer working conditions and job security. (Add whatever you like to text.)
You can also BCC or forward your mail to firstname.lastname@example.org, the local union in Gers which has been involved.
Some leaflets and more information in different languages is available here: http://www.zsp.net.pl/natais