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Argentinian Messengers Union Success!!
Written by BillDozer   


A Union of bicycle and motorcycle messengers has demonstrated the power of organized labor, by responding to a illegitimate lockout, and a "pay-to-work" scam, by seizing control of their company, with the help of the Department of Labor. All labor news should be this good.

The original story (En Español) can be found HERE.

Here is my attempted translation of the full text of the article:

The workers of the Independent Union of Messengers and Cadets (SIMECA-CTA), took, since yesterday, control of Servimoto, a messenger company in San Savior of Jujuy that Locked out 120 workers. The conflict began two weeks ago and the union has maintained all its members in this CTA jujeña subsidiary.

In an interview with ACT, Julio Cruz, Secretary General at provincial level of the SIMECA, remembered that “On Friday the 13th of October we gave a petition in which we demanded improvements of the labor conditions to develop our workplace. Because in addition to paying 30 pesos per week to work, and being forced to clean our areas of the office, the supposed owner had declared the company against the formation of the union in Jujuy”. The leader makes reference to Alejandra Braceda, the face of the employer's association, but not the legal proprietor. It was then that the company declared breaks.

“On Mother's Day weekend (Oct. 14-15), they closed the doors of the office" - continued Cruz, "and there was no news until Monday the 16th, the day by which they said that those who wanted to return had to sign against the 15 companions who were in the union. By necessity, some signed and returned to work, while we kept fighting”.

Thus, meetings in the Department of Labor originated, In which the employer's association declared that the workers were independent, something that, by employment controls, was confirmed as not certain. With the support of the CTA Jujuy and the organizations who compose it, they kept the fight seated at the office door. Soon, the Ministry of Work dictated an obligatory conciliation of 15 days, to which the company asked for a fourth interval. “They did not want to engage in a dialogue with us. They had the obligation to rehire us, and they did not comply. With the time limit past, and without having reached an agreement. we decided to take control of the operation, along with our companions from Buenos Aires who came to accompany to us”, affirmed Cruz.

In spite of the attempts on the part of Alejandra Braceda, who appeared in the office and went ahead with the emptying of the offices, today the SIMECA workers began to take charge of the company: “We've taken from our houses elements to work, so we feel like we've finalized the conflict. The idea is to begin a cooperative. We are in permanent assembly. Soon we will have a general meeting where we will address the issues in question. We want to negotiate with the owners of the office - those who were not part of the events that appeared in the papers. Soon we will see how we will maintain the company and the operators. We are united at this moment, in an impressive way. We are going to follow through and make this cooperative emerge”, concluded the jujeño leader.

At this time Gaston Fernandez, Secretary General of SIMECA, is in Jujuy. On this subject he expressed: “When we found out that, because of the petition against the multiplicity of tasks, the company was closed for 72 hours, leaving the 120 workers in the street, this seemed to us a very great conflict. So we decided to take this conflict to the national level and lend a hand from each of the places where we are”.

On the development of these actions, he affirmed that "24 hours ago we became the management of the business, with all the messengers working and with a lot of predispositions on the part of the clients that are aware of the issue. We have a lot of support from the street also. So far the measure is a success and the Department of Labor continues to vouch for it. Because one must emphasize that the Department of Labor recognizes SIMECA and CTA as the representatives of the workers in this conflict", said the proud young leader. Then he finished: "Thus we see that the construction of the union to national level is advancing. Also they are organizing in Rosary, Cordoba - that next month will have its first assembly - and also in Mendoza".


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