Requests for Solidarity from El Salvador
- Requests for Solidarity from El Salvador
Date: 8/9/2002 3:39:06 PM Pacific Daylight Time
Enclosed in this email are two letters, one from Alirio Romero of STSEL, and one from Ricardo Monge and Jaime Ernesto of the STISSS. These letters are addressed to CISPES and are a personalized plea for our solidarity and support. We are also sending you fliers that the unions are using in El Salvador to organize their workers. The fliers prove that the firings are directly related to militant union work, and can help give people and groups the bigger picture of how free trade agreements impact workers' lives.
CISPES National Office
(Letter to CISPES from STSEL, August 7, 2002)
Please receive a cordial and affectionate greeting, from the Board of Directors of the STSEL. We wish you success in your campaign against the US-Central American Free Trade Agreement (CAFTA).
I write you in a critical moment to request your solidarity. At this moment more than ever, we call on the members of CISPES to give their help, both material and political, now that the government has attacked us with two more firings, including a union director. But our union chose the path of resistance. We are engaging in a series of protest activities that lead up to a march on August 15 to the Legislative Assembly, and do not rule out the possibility of a national strike.
We know that we can count on your solidarity in this moment of emergency.
Sindicato de Industria de los Trabajadores del Sector Eléctrico (STSEL)
(Letter to CISPES from the STISSS, August 7, 2002)
Esteemed sisters and brothers, please receive revolutionary greetings on the part of the Board of Directors of the Sindicato de Trabajadores del Instituto Salvadoreño del Seguro Social (STISSS).
We write you to ask for your accompaniment in our struggle in defense of our union, and in defense of public health care in El Salvador. Our union has been hit by a wave of firings at different worksites: since August 2, already 11 union representatives have been fired from the Acajutla Medical Unit, the Monserrat Neighborhood Medical Unit, the Hospital Primero de Mayo, and the Regional Hospital of Santa Ana, as well as the administrative units Acquisitions and Contracts and Legal.
Now that we are in a moment of emergency, we call on an organization with which we have always maintained strong ties of solidarity. This new wave of firings threatens our entire union structure, and seeks to destroy our base.
We hope you will be able to support us, in any way possible, in this very important time.
Ricardo Monge Meléndez Jaime Ernesto Avalos
Secretary-General Secretary of Organization
Sindicato de Trabajadores del Instituto Salvadoreño del Seguro Social (STISSS)
(Flyer from the STISSS, August 2, 2002)
To the Users and Workers of the ISSS Public Health Care System:
We call upon the Salvadoran people to join in protest against the recent firings of our union representatives in the Transportation Section and the Hospital Primero de Mayo, where workers were fired for the simple fact of being union members. We call on the people to reject the discriminatory politics of the government, and to demonstrate their indignation at these mercantilist anti-populist measures.
All must unite against the corporations that take advantage of a corrupt and repressive government, that steal from the state and that try to rob the people of their national patrimony. There is no more time to reflect, now is the time for action. Come join in struggle with our union STISSS! Using our power as workers, we can fight off the attacks on our union comrades. Everyone, heed the call of our Board of Directors! If we do not protest now, we will disappear as a union, and the ISSS will disappear as an institution.
Repression and firings will not silence the workers in their permanent struggle to combat corruption and mercantilism. The market is not the solution to the problems of health care in El Salvador. ISSS director Mauricio Ramos should investigate the corruption that runs rampant in the institution's administration.
Defend the rights of the ISSS users! Defend our jobs!
Demand an end to the repression against union workers!
End the corruption in the ISSS!
(Flyer from STSEL, August 3, 2002)
DON'T BE FOOLED!!
Salvadoran sisters and brothers, do you know what the SIEPAC is?
SIEPAC is part of the PLAN PUEBLA-PANAMA. It consists of a system of electrical interconnection at 230Kw between the countries of Central America that would permit the commercialization of electrical energy between the countries of the region.
How did they obtain the economic resources to finance this project?
SIEPAC is paid for by loans from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the Spanish multinational corporation ENDESA, and resources from every country.
Who will be responsible for paying off these loans?
The people of Central America, through their governments, will have to pay off these loans.
How will the governments pay off these loans?
Governments will pay off these loans by increasing user fees for electricity, making it more expensive for the people.
Who will administrate the electrical interconnection lines?
The administration of the power lines will be handed over to a multinational corporation.
Who will benefit?
The multinational corporation who oversees the power lines will benefit by charging whatever fees it wants. Global capital will benefit by investing in the electrical sector.
Who will lose?
All the people who use electricity will lose. They will have to pay high user fees for electricity as set by a multinational corporation. They will have to pay off the loans through high taxes. They, and future generations, will have to pay the environmental costs of the destruction of forests.
SIEPAC benefits a few multinational business interests, at the cost of the great majority of Central American people. The organized workers in the electrical sector - STSEL and all other electrical workers' unions - call on the people to rise up in protest against this exploitative project.