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(en) Spain, Barcelona, Bus drivers on strike

Date Tue, 25 Dec 2007 09:42:16 +0200

Bus drivers in Barcelona have called a strike for 21-24 December and 2-4
January, demanding a second day of leave per week. Currently, bus drivers have
to work six days a week. Workers with the anarcho-syndicalist union,
Confederacion General de Treball (CGT) agreed to go on strike to press their
demands against the owner, TMB, allowing only minimum services needed to connect
neighborhoods without other transportation options. The CGT linked with
squatters and direct action anarchists to ensure that scabs would not be
permitted to keep the buses running. While CGT workers picketed all the bus
depots, anarchists, independentistas, and squatters throughout the city took
action against buses operated by scabs, splashing paint on the windshields,
breaking the rearview mirrors, or puncturing the tires, so that buses had to
return to the station. Although in the morning a large number of buses were in
the streets, around midday hardly any buses were passing by even on major
streets. 54 buses driven by scabs were attacked and sabotaged the first day,
with tires punctured, rearview mirrors broken, or windshields splashed with
paint, rendering them immobile. One bus was even forcibly evicted by a rowdy
crowd of strike supporters. The city of Barcelona possesses only two cranes
capable of hauling decommissioned buses, and needless to say the day's attacks
went quite beyond their capacity. Additionally, bus stations all throughout the
city were spraypainted with stencils urging solidarity with the strikers,
although reflecting the dramatic changes caused in Spanish society by mass media
and spectacular consumerism, a distressing number of people were grumbling about
the inconvenience and calling for various forms of repression against strikers
and direct actionists. Major newspapers collaborated with police to provide a
negative headline to the strike, claiming that someone was injured by one
sabotage action, though this has yet to be verified by independent sources.

Previously, the bus workers had built connections with squatters, sending a
letter of support to the ten-year-old squatted social center Can Vies, which is
on property owned by TMB.

You can find more information about some of these other cases at:

CGT Barcelona
CNT Barcelona
Indymedia Barcelona
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