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(en) Confederacion Sindical Solidaridad Obrera. Spain

From Solidaridad Obrera <sobrera@nodo50.org>
Date Tue, 13 Feb 2001 08:47:26 -0500 (EST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

Another way of understanding anarchosyndicalism

Solidarid Obrera was founded in 1990, mainly by militants of what is now
the CGT. The 1989 Congress of the CGT in Madrid, with the triumph of the
reformist wing (loss of decision making power of assemblies in favour of
executive committees, the creation of a Conflict Committee, secret
greements for the entry of groups of members of political parties, such
as the Humanista Party, excisions from CCOO such as the Syndical Left of
Bankworkers...) caused more than a third of the syndicalist militants to
splitting. In the end, the vast majority preferred to continue in the
CGT and fight within and only a few ended up leaving.

In Madrid we made contact with the CNT and saw that it was impossible to
enter that organisation.
Facing the danger of becoming mere "company unions," we constituted in
Madrid a new syndical confederation: Solidaridad Obrera,
anarchosyndicalist in its statutes, and with the goal of spreading
throughout the rest of the State.

We are currently active in Madrid, Alicante and Menorca, with contacts
in many other provinces. We are a small confederation but we feel we
have found the balancing point between the purism and separation - from
- workers - and - workplace of the CNT and the reformism and protagonism
of the syndical elections of the CGT.

We are different from the CNT in that we take part in syndical elections
in those companies which we think will benefit from them. We think these
elections are a lesser evil and can guarantee an infrastructure for the
running of syndical sections (members of our union in these companies).
In any
case, taking part in these elections is a point of strategy, freely
decided. At times they can be counterproductive and therefore the
syndical sections or sectorial trade unions decide whether or not to
take part.

As regards the CGT, we do not share the idea that the total number of
delegates elected in trade union elections is a determining factor for
the strength of the organisation as regards possible negotions. We
think that what is important is the level of militancy and mobilisation.
Presenting candidatures in companies in order to gain certain results
(without an ideological base) has resulted in the CGT pacting and
signing in some companies agreements which are perjudicial to the

Furthermore, we have seen that militants of political parties, normally
Marxists, distort and cause many problems in the unions.

We feel that, despite being small (we are only 500 members), we have
shown that anarchosyndicalism can be carried out in the workplace while
participating in social struggles such as squatting, antimilitary,
ecology, prisoners, ....

We support participating with both CNT and CGT in joint actions. Every
1st May we propose a joint demonstration, but without success up till
now. We currently coincide with them in specific campaigns, such as the
fight against accidents in building works (we publish a newsletter
together), or in a
soon-to-begin campaign against temporary employment agencies with the
CNT. Our relations are getting better, although we wish they were more

                                                For Solidaridad Obrera.

                                     Signed. Jose Ignacio Cabañas Magan
                     Federaciones Locales en Madrid, Alicante y Menorca

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