Greek Vodafone strike ‘illegal’

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The group of sacked women cleaners at the Camp of Struggle. One of them holds the tablet stating the 301 days of the fight
The group of sacked women cleaners at the Camp of Struggle. One of them holds the tablet stating the 301 days of the fight

AN Athens court declared ‘illegal’ the national strike called by Vodafone workers yesterday demanding a collective labour agreement.

The Vodafone workers’ trade union refused to accept the court’s decision and pickets were out early on Tuesday morning in Athens and major Greek cities.

Workers at another telecom company Wind are set for their two-day national strike on Wednesday and Thursday.

The vast majority of workers at the Greek telecom companies are young people in their 20s who have been fighting against the bosses’ attempts to impose ‘flexible’ working conditions and keep low wages.

In Athens the 595 sacked Finance Ministry women cleaners completed 301 days and nights of their fight to get their jobs back at their Centre of Struggle, the tent camp they have set up on the pavement outside a Finance Ministry building in the city centre.

A group of cleaners spoke to News Line at the Centre of Stuggle on Monday.

Maria Stergiopoulou said: ‘We are very optimistic that we will get our jobs back, I believe it 100 per cent.’

This view was agreed by all other women cleaners present.

But one of them, Khrysoula, added: ‘We know we are going to win, but if the SYRIZA government won’t take us back, then we will set up camp outside the Prime Minister’s office.’

Another cleaner, Andrianna, said: ‘The previous government’s ministers who sacked us must be put on trial for the poverty and misery they created.’

When asked if they support the SYRIZA government’s recent agreement with the EU on the extension of the austerity accords, Maria said: ‘The government were trapped, the four months extension deal was the best they could have done.’

Katerina said that she lives across the street from where the Greek Prime Minister and SYRIZA leader Alexis Tsipras lives.

She said: ‘If he doesn’t take us back to work I will go up to his house and demand why.’