a decisive struggle for the Spanish working class!

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Cadiz metal workers are waging a great battle for the purchasing power of their wages and serve as a beacon of inspiration for all workers in Spain. Faced with the greed of the bosses, police repression and attacks by the prostitute press, workers are determined to fight to the end.

Read the original in Spanish here |

Seven days of indefinite strikes have passed in one of the bitterest battles in the history of this sector and this province. 29,000 employees and 5,600 companies are affected, including the large factories in the Bay of Cadiz, such as Navantia (active in shipbuilding), Airbus and others.

The most important thing to highlight is that the strike was called by all union forces in the sector: CCOO, UGT, CGT, Coordinadora de Trabajadores del Metal (Coordinadora de Trabajadores del Metal) etc. This explains the scope and strength that the movement has shown so far Has. The strike is practically unanimous.

Metal workers take a stand

Workers are calling for a 5.4 percent pay increase for the past year to keep up with the price hike over the past 12 months, according to the INE (National Statistics Institute). Therefore, workers simply demand that wages maintain their purchasing power and that their families be kept safe.

This is all the more important now that the bosses started making profits after the economic crisis in 2020. The listed companies alone made more than 30 billion euros in profits in the first half of this year, and this flood of money has also reached medium-sized and small companies.

The strike was called by all union workers in the sector / Image: CSBC, twitter

And that to say nothing of the fabulous profits of the electricity companies, the trade, the rental and real estate companies etc., which are stealing the income of the workers with the biggest price increases in 30 years!

The unions are calling for wage increases of 2 percent for the coming year and 3 percent later, starting with the signing of a new collective agreement in January 2022 when the current collective agreement expires. In response, the employer is offering a pitiful, insulting increase of 0.5 percent this year and 1.5 percent over the next two years!

This is unacceptable and has already sparked enormous anger among workers in the province, who also have the highest unemployment rate in the country at 23.4 percent.

The owners of Cadiz’s metal sector are taking advantage of looming unemployment to squeeze wages while continuing to sell their products at market prices, which have risen across the country due to inflation, increasing their profits.

Of course, the bought and sold media of the bourgeoisie unleashed class hatred against the metalworkers: the most militant sector of the proletariat and with the highest class consciousness, which has a great and glorious fighting tradition in the Bay of Cadiz.

The media barons accused the workers of blocking the Hospital de la Línea de la Concepción (the main A&E hospital in Cadiz). This was a false claim: there was only one specific problem at one of the two entrances to the health center. They have also been falsely accused of blocking ambulances and assaulting a truck driver who disregards workers’ pickets.

In response to these lies, dozens of health workers have come to the doors of hospitals and health centers across the bay to applaud the striking workers as they marched and demonstrated.

The Cadiz strike must succeed!

This heroic struggle reminds us that the working class, and especially its industrial wing, is the most combative and determined force in society in fighting injustices of all kinds, starting with the exploitation of labor. But our support and applause are not enough.

This struggle must succeed – it can and must succeed. The first condition is to steadfastly maintain unity in struggle and in strikes. With this in mind, the CCOO and UGT leaders have the ultimate responsibility and workers must put maximum pressure on them not to give in or to negotiate and make agreements behind the back of the grassroots union members.

Everything must be discussed and approved in mass democratic assemblies of workers and assemblies of the entire metal sector in the province, not on the basis of individual negotiations between the unions and individual company bosses. Either we win together or we lose separately.

Let’s be clear. The Cadiz metal bosses have the entire national ruling class behind them. The workers must not give in because a victory for the Cadiz workers would encourage the entire Spanish working class to follow their example.

The ruling class rightly fears an outbreak of wage strikes in response to the inexorable rise in prices we are suffering from.

After the partial victory of the workers of Tubacex (a metal pipe manufacturer) in Álava, which attempted a 20 percent cut in staff and was forced to give in, it is of utmost interest to the Spanish bourgeoisie to defeat the metal workers of Cadiz. Likewise, the triumph of their Cadiz brothers is of prime concern to the Spanish working class.

The struggle of Cadiz is central to all Spanish workers. Maintaining an indefinite strike is very exhausting. To win, Cadiz workers need the encouragement and support of their brothers and sisters from across the country.

Consequently, we must offer maximum solidarity and support to the struggle in Cadiz, set up strike-fighting funds across the sector and in all companies, and network the isolated struggles that are taking place in different areas.

There are struggles across Spain for better wages and against layoffs, which should coincide with the metalworkers’ strike, in Galicia, Alicante, Zaragoza, Murcia, Sagunto, Castilla y León, Jaén, Soria, Málaga and elsewhere.

The working class across the country needs to understand that a vision of their immediate future is unfolding in Cadiz. We must direct all our support to this brave struggle under the slogan: Union of Proletarian Brothers! All together until we win!



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