Haitian Factory Occupations and Wildcats

occupations 1Over 10,000 workers including Batay Ouvriye members at the industrial parks (i.e. mass sweatshop district) of Port au Prince occupied their factories Tuesday in support of the demand for the enactment of the minimum wage legislation passed by Parliament, but stalled by the President. The workers are demanding the full 200 gourdes minimum wage, while the President and capitalists are trying to negotiate a lower wage. The bosses fled the factory in a panic through the back door as workers took over. Workers then marched to Parliament where a meeting was being held on the objections to implementing the minimum wage law. Flags from occupying nations were torn down and burnt by the workers (Alterpresse 08/04/09).

The first event occured on August 3rd, and then subsequently by other groups of workers. Batay Ouvriye, a combative workers’ organization, has called for the full 200 gourde minimum wage to be implimented, and has mobilized to fight in communities and factories to see it through. Miami Autonomy and Solidarity supports the struggles of Haitian workers and students, and will be picketing the Haitian Consulate in Miami on August 19th in coordination with other Haitian solidarity groups. MAS asks progressives and revolutionaries to organize similiar pickets and struggle alongside Haitian workers this August 19th. In the days following August 4th similar occupations and activities have been reported in the industrial parks of Port-au-Prince.