(eng) German Strike Wave Builds

Profit Margin (pmargin@xchange.apana.org.au)
Thu, 23 May 1996 18:57:10 +0200

From: rich@pencil.math.missouri.edu (Rich Winkel)
Newsgroups: misc.activism.progressive
Subject: German Strike Wave Builds
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Date: 22 May 1996 02:31:01 GMT
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/** labr.global: 217.0 **/
** Topic: German Strike Wave Builds **
** Written 4:02 PM May 15, 1996 by labornews in cdp:labr.global **
From: Institute for Global Communications <labornews@igc.apc.org>

May 14 1996 The Times
German unions step up strikes

GERMANY'S dustmen were yesterday preparing to join other workers in
lightning nationwide strikes after fruitless talks between the
Government and the public sector unions.

Helmut Kohl, the Chancellor, and his Cabinet are urging calm on the
increasingly angry unions, fearful that workers will take to the
streets against spending cuts as they did in France last autumn.

There can be no more powerful threat to civic calm in Germany than a
dustmen's strike. Only yesterday the German recycling agency was
bragging that Germany has become "world champion" in the rubbish
disposal league. Each German recycled 65.5 kg (144 lb) of rubbish last
year that is 77 per cent of all household packaging.

So far the public service protests are at the level of "warning
strikes" usually lasting only one or two shifts and switching from
city to city. German postal workers in Munich, Stuttgart, Berlin and
other cities were refusing to deliver mail yesterday. Bus and tram
drivers are coming out in other towns.

It is the dustmen who can bring Germany to its knees. They, along with
3.2 million other public sector workers, want a wage rise of 4.5 per
cent but would give ground in return for job guarantees. The Government
is offering no wage increase and is seeking cuts in holiday

Dieter Schulte, head of the German trade union federation, last night
issued a warning of a "hot summer" of industrial protest with strikes
in the offing by airport workers and banks as well as train and tram

** End of text from cdp:labr.global **

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