Greek unions call 24 hour general strike

Greece's main labour body said Thursday it is calling a 24-hour general strike to protest more than 4,000 lay-offs that have swept the country in February.

Submitted by Ed on March 1, 2009

Workers should not "pay the price of the financial crisis," the General Confederation of Greek Workers (GSEE) said in a statement.

GSEE - which did not specify the date for the strike - said February's figure followed significant job losses between November and January when nearly 8,000 people lost their jobs.
The body, representing around 600,000 workers, urged a general strike to demand job security, as well as improved union and salary rights for workers.

Wednesday, a thousand demonstrators marched in central Athens after a smaller union collective, Adedy, called a strike in protest of the country's conservative government.



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Submitted by taxikipali on March 1, 2009

On a short note, GSEE is the umbrella union for workers of the private sector, while ADEDY its equivalent for the public sector. GSEE's decision to call this general strike must not be seen as some incredible step of class warfare. It is common practice to call such strikes, and within the given situation in the country GSEE's decision is being widely laughed at as a ritual token of a syndicalist body who has lost any credibility amongst workers. It is common practice for the gen. secs of the union to become MPs and Cabinet Ministers after serving some terms, and GSEE is considered as the epitome of what in common parlance translates as worker's fathers [ergatopateres] referring to the uncompromising paternalism of its professional syndicalists who are as removed from labour as any other boss. The occupation of the GSEE HQs in Athens during the December uprising marked the union as an enemy formation to the working class and the revolution.