A series of strikes have been hitting Uruguay over the last few months--the latest being that of Montevideo's transport workers, which paralysed the capital from midnight on Thursday (Sept. 14).
A series of strikes have been hitting Uruguay over the last few months--the latest being that of Montevideo's transport workers, which paralysed the capital from midnight on Thursday (Sept. 14). The strike -- for higher wages -- was called for by the Transport Workers Federation (FOT), which includes I??? unions covering all forms of transport: buses, railways, taxis, fraigh???rs, etc.
Called for "an in???inite period", the strike has brought to a standstill talks which was taking place between the Government and the National Confederation o???bour (CNT) on general pay rises in the private sector. These talks had resulted in an offer by the Government for a rise (as yet unspecified in f???res) to be implemented in not more than seven days, on the condition to all stoppages and strikes would cease forthwith. The CNT student the proposal and, in view of the Government not being able to specific the amount of the raises, called the strike immediately. The Government has now announced that no negotiations can be resumed until the strikes called off.
Our coverage was ???lmed on Friday (Sept. 15) -- and also includes another demonstration with took place the same day. The butchers of the ??? were protesting against the Government's four-month ban on the sale of beef for home consumption. The ban began in July, and local shopkeepers have been complaining that they do not have sufficient beef substitutes to sell, s???usly curtailing their means of livelihood.
SYNOPSIS: Private cars were the only traffic to be seen on the streets of Montevideo, the Capital of Uruguay, on Friday. An indefinite period transport strike was called to demand higher wages--and affected were all forms of transport, including freighters, taxis and buses.
This strike is only one of hundreds which have taken place throughout the country during the year. This particular stoppage has also brought to a standstill negotiations which were underway between the Government and the National Confederation of Labour for across the board rises in the private sector of business. The Government had accepted that rises should become effective within seven days of an agreement being reached, but had not yet specified the percentages to be allowed. But, they added, no agreement would be signed unless all strikes and stoppages ceased forthwith. The Transport Workers Federation refused to accept this condition and called out all the members of their fifteen affiliated unions.
On the same day--another group also demonstrated in Montevideo. Butchers were protesting against the Government's four-month ban on sales of meat for national consumption. The ben, which began in July, is geared to boost Uruguay's beef-export trade--a vital necessity to a country which has had three major monetary devaluations in three months. The butchers, however, are complaining that they do not have sufficient food substitutes to sell--seriously curtailing their means of livelihood.