Three thousand workers at a Foxconn plant in Zhengzhou, China, struck on Friday 5 October. Foxconn is an electronics manufacturer which produces Apple iPhones and iPods.
The immediate catalyst for the strike was an increase in quality control inspections and increasing demands from management for higher-quality production without any additional training. Foxconn have also been forcing workers to work through holidays.
Workers in WalMart stores in California struck on 4 October, marking the first shop-floor strike in the company’s 50-year history.
Grievances include unilateral shift changes and management victimisation of workers who complain about workplace conditions.
Strikers attended a conference organised by the UNI global union to launch the WalMart Global Union Alliance. The store strikes follow strikes by WalMart warehouse and distribution workers in September.
Taranto clean up
On 25 September 4,000 workers of the IlVA steelworks in the Italian city of Taranto struck against a court decision to close the plant due to dangerous levels of pollution.
For years the plants’s present owners — the Riva family dynasty — have avoided their legal duty to clean up the technologically decrepit plant.
The strike — in support of the owners — did not involve all workers. The majority demurred or took other forms of protest.
Official statistics say 12,000 have been killed, and tens of thousands affected by a variety of malignant cancers, over 50 years.
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