Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/693/13126

From The Socialist newspaper, 9 November 2011

Israel: General strike over job security

Judy Beishon

A general strike took place in Israel on Monday 7 November, with workers in the civil service, public transport, universities, airports, sea ports and local authorities among those striking.

The strike was called by the Histadrut trade union federation, to demand a reduction in the number of public sector workers that are employed by agencies rather than directly by the state and an increase in their wages and benefits.

About 20% of public sector workers are 'employed' in this way, on worse pay, terms and conditions than permanent employees. Many don't qualify for social benefits and have no job security. The Histadrut has called for tens of thousands of agency workers to be transferred to direct employment.

An increased number of workers on short-term contracts with few rights is common across the globe as part of governmental austerity drives.

With 300,000 contract workers, Israel is said to have the highest percentage of the workforce employed in this way among the OECD countries, with up to 10% across the entire workforce, compared with the OECD average of about 1.5%. It is becoming endemic in all sectors, not just in the food, security and cleaning industries but in education, health and other areas too.

Some concessions were made by the government following trade union pressure, including a little improvement in wages and rights of agency workers, but they were not offering enough for the strike to be called off.

This strike shows a high degree of solidarity between permanent and temporary workers in Israel and an understanding that the bosses will use the differences to undermine the wages, conditions and rights of all workers. However, disgracefully, the Israeli Labour Court limited the strike to just four hours, 6am to 10am, a turn of events that was probably no surprise to Histadrut leader Ofer Eini who had said: "The strike will be unlimited and only a court injunction could prevent it".

The Histadrut leaders have a long history of failing to support workers' struggles and there has been speculation in the Israeli press that they have only presented a radical face in this battle in order to regain some standing in the workers' movement following the spontaneous, unprecedented 'tent city' movement of recent months.

Also, reports of the negotiations with the government over recent years suggest that an eventual deal over agency workers could include the Histadrut agreeing to more 'management flexibility' with the 'newer' workers to be employed in the public sector, making it easier to relocate or fire them.

Despite the role played by the Histradut leaders, there have been many strikes and struggles in Israel this year, including by social workers, rail workers, civilian police workers and a six-month strike at Haifa Chemicals.

In many cases there has been anger towards the union leaders and in the Haifa Chemicals dispute - which eventually won important concessions - the strike leaders switched their allegiance early on to the relatively new union organisation 'Power to the Workers' that has been willing to put up a fight in workers' interests.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 9 November 2011:


Fighting the cuts

Build for 30 Nov strike - The fight of all our lives!


Socialist Party event

Socialism 2011: Crucial preparation for the fightback


Socialist Party youth and students

Jarrow march ends, fightback continues

We won't pay 9K! - Scrap tuition fees


Socialist Party workplace news

Unison members say YES to strike

Southampton: Sink Tory cuts!

Bombardier protest against job losses

Workplace news in brief


Socialist history

1935 - when angry Welsh protests forced a government u-turn

1915 - How strikes and rent strikes won gains for Scottish tenants


International socialist news and analysis

Failed G20 summit takes eurozone nearer to the abyss

Greek workers must resist the dictatorship of finance capital

Socialist MEP among Gaza peace activists kidnapped by IDF

Israel: General strike over job security


Socialist Party news and analysis

Housing slump

Miliband the militant? No way!

News in brief


 

Home   |   The Socialist 9 November 2011   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  




Related links:

Israel:

trianglePunishment of Tamimi family awakens wave of international solidarity

triangleWest London Socialist Party: Israel-Palestine - Trump inflames tensions

triangleTrump's incendiary Jerusalem statement reignites Israeli-Palestinian conflict

triangleThousands march in London for Palestine

triangleManchester Socialist Party: Israel-Palestine

General strike:

triangleCardiff East Socialist Party: We're all under attack - TUC call a general strike

triangle110 years ago: massacre at Santa Maria school in Chile - commemorate 21 December 1907

triangleEditorial of the Socialist, issue 968

Union:

triangleUnison national women's conference

triangleSupermarket's slash jobs - union fightback needed

triangleUniversity workers' walkout for decent pensions

Agency workers:

triangleBin workers - fighting back wins!

triangleStreet cleaners support the Birmingham bin strike

International

International

21/2/18

Russia

Russia: Ali Feruz, journalist and human rights activist, freed from jail

21/2/18

South Africa

South Africa: Ramaphosa is a safe pair of hands for capitalism

14/2/18

France

France: rallies in support of oppressed Kurdish people

14/2/18

Unemployed

Big political strike against Finnish government's attack on unemployed

14/2/18

Brazil

Brazil: Lula conviction confirmed

14/2/18

South Africa

Cape Town drought

7/2/18

China

May's silence is a green light for Chinese repression

7/2/18

Tamil Solidarity

Protesters denounce oppressive Sri Lankan regime

7/2/18

Sudan

Sudan: Mohamed Satti released - global solidarity campaign gets results!

31/1/18

Kurds

Stop the war on the Kurds

31/1/18

Austria

Vienna: 50,000 march against racism and austerity

31/1/18

Kurds

Stop the war on the Kurds

24/1/18

Palestine

Punishment of Tamimi family awakens wave of international solidarity

17/1/18

Hong Kong

Stop repression in Hong Kong and China

17/1/18

Tunisia

Tunisia: explosion of protests against government austerity

triangleMore International articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0191 421 6230

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


February 2018

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999