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This leaflet was distributed in Limassol in January of 2012.
CYPRIOT AND FOREIGN WORKERS UNITED
Cyprus could not help but also be affected by the global economic crisis of capitalism. The result of the attack of the capitalists’ against the working masses has no other purpose than to overcome the crisis at the expense of the social majority. But the truth is: We, the working masses, the unemployed, and the youths; we were not the cause of their crisis. As always, the profit was theirs and so should the crisis be; theirs. They burden us with the capitalistic crisis, the debts and the deficits that the capital has created. At the same time, the government spends billions on the banks so that they can continue to increase their profits. Unemployment has become a nightmarish reality; especially for the youth, having reached its highest percentage of unemployment, while the working conditions keep getting harder and worse. Even while the government, with the support of opposition political imposes, austerity, cutbacks and layoffs, the forces of capital trying to subdue any social resistance, with extortionate dilemmas for possible inclusion in our IMF; the government tries to eliminate the morale and unity of the working classes by targeting some of its segments. But on the other hand, we have the elevation of the public employees, showing them as supposedly superior and privileged; and the attack against the foreign workers and the migrants that are targeted, even though they work under the hardest conditions and are the most exploited workers.
Employees should not be fooled by this propaganda. It is already clear that cuts in public were just the beginning, and now the attack has gone further into a private level by threatening even the basic rights and achievements of the workers. Immigrants, on the other hand, living under an almost medieval overexploitation condition imposed by the ‘sovereigns’. Therefore, the employers and the government aim to weaken the value of labour power even more in order to elevate their profits.
We know that, we, as private employees, will not be able to claim our rights if the salaries of the public workers are decreased. We know that the money they lose will not go into our pockets; and that if the attack against them passes, we will lose even more. The more experienced workers know that if the new employees get a lower salary, there is certainly going be a time when their turn comes. We, Cypriot employees, know that the exploitation of the foreign employees and the cheap working labour can only do us harm and have negative result. Not because we cannot compete with those who ‘steal’ our jobs or because we want to support them by mere charitableness or compassion, but because we know that when one part of them is under explicit exploitation, the other part is next. When one part is in a tough situation (e.g.: illegal stay, uninsured and illegal job), they will agree to work under the worst circumstances, something that will cause the other part to compromise and back down. We also know that if the foreign employees were socially insured, our pensions would not have been threatened. However, illegal stay and illegal work remain because the employees cannot confront the employers and that is something that privileges the capital and the employers themselves; their aim being to weaken all the employees on their entirety. And I wonder; who is the real enemy? Foreign and Cypriot employees cannot win and their struggling cannot be rewarded unless they all unite and resist those holding the strings for equal rights. This situation can only be altered if there is instant and determined resistance on the basis of class and syndicalism union and solidarity.
Employees cannot expect anything from the syndicalism union as the whole control by the party bureaucracies has turned them into party mechanisms where the well-endowed leaders promote customer and managerial ‘deceptive’ syndicalism which usually compromises, or even, identifies to the employers’ interests. Employees united, should turn their backs on all those who exploit them and take matters into their own hands, and while self-organized, fight for their needs. For this to be achieved, there have to be basis-organizations which will work with direct-democratic general assemblies and will have class composition where party officials or bosses will not have a place.
Today, we march and shout that we are on the side of the foreign employees, rejecting and fighting every voice that tries to incriminate the situation that creates the crisis. We are fighting for their rights at work, security, decent wages and decent life, knowing that we fight together for our local workers. We call on all workers, women and men, young and older, public and private officials, locals and foreigners to dare and look in the eyes of their real enemy and thus, together, move forward in the struggle to claim our common rights.
THE IMMIGRANTS ARE EARTH'S THE DAMNED
CYPRIOT AND FOREIGNERS UNITED WORKERS
SOLIDARITY MARCH 29/1/2012
TIME: 15:00 at Molos (2nd parking) - LIMASSOL