CONCLUDING MOTION OF THE ASSEMBLY OF COMBATIVE WORKERS
This final version of the motion includes contributions and requests for changes and additions.
On the 27 th September 2020 we held the national assembly of combative workers in Bologna.
The themes discussed and future goals can be found below.
The last few weeks have confirmed how the ongoing health crisis exacerbates a structural crisis of the capitalist economy, generalizing impoverishment and worsening the living conditions of millions of male and female workers (also aggravating their poor health and safety conditions at work that often leads to death).
The approaching end of a moratorium on layoffs and the increasingly and pressing employers’ offensive on this ground are clear signs of this process.
Bonomi’s Confindustria (major Italian employers’ association), Conte’s Government (representing the interests of employers) and the EU (an area where continental bourgeoisie’s interests are mediated) are using the emergency to maximize profits and socialize losses, fuelling institutional and informal racism in turn.
In this context, the demand for a social pact (supported by the Recovery Plan and a
debt expansion whose payment falls on workers and unemployed) favours employers’ interests as it endorses productive restructuring plans and exploitation.
We must then contrast the general attack to workers’ wages and rights with a general platform of struggle that on a national and international scale can relaunch the historical slogans of the workers’ movement.
- a generalized reduction of working hours for the same salary;
- taxation on great wealth to make employers pay for the crisis;
- guaranteed wages to all employed and unemployed proletarians, eliminating precarious contracts and starvation wages;
- elimination of institutional racism starting with the abolition of current immigration laws and a mass regularization unrelated to the blackmail of work.
Trade unions responses should move beyond the corporate and category levels. Trade unions must lay the foundations for a mass counter-offensive, capable of speaking to the whole class and mobilizing it in the name of its general interests. It is then necessary to resume initiatives involving the CCNL.
Either its non-renewal, or the perpetuation of factory-based arrangements (with the extension of company welfare) will lead to the imposition of dominant local bargaining, wage cages, and the liberalization and of institutionalized gang-masters.
The school, health, public transport sectors as well as the demand for social rights will represent the immediate litmus tests for this process.
We want to put an end to the casualization of temporary workers and outsourcing. We want an extraordinary plan to reconstruct universal services against any differentiated autonomy which divides workers.
The dynamics of struggle featuring various class sectors remain articulated and marked by different cycles of resistance.
In some combative workers’ categories, such as transport and logistics, the conditions may already call for an immediate national strike.
There are also workers showing significant resistance to renewed category-based contracts, displaying the rubbish outcomes of the concertation. Yet, despite the evidence of this disaster, some workers display confusion and inability to develop mass protests.
Therefore, we want to cross these countertrends, pushing, spreading them and then trying to make them converge in a general and mass struggle.
It is also necessary to consider the unprecedented attack on trade union rights’ agency, which is rooted in a ten-year framework of repression, criminalization and discrimination of radical trade unionism and combative workers.
An example can be found in the current maxi trial against hundreds of logistics and food sector workers, organizing against the company Italpizza.
For this reason, the assembly adheres to the demonstration against repression, the security decrees and for the defence of the right to strike – 3 rd October Modena (where the 23rd September Committee, featuring comrades from various organizations and realities of struggle, also participates with its specific segment of workers and women belonging to exploited classes).
In the storm of the economic and health crisis, working women and women without social privileges pay the highest cost.
A double cost due to being workers and women.
For this reason, the assembly believes that the development of an initiative and a campaign centred on the rights and needs of women can no longer wait. We organize:
a) for the right to work, against insecurity, wage and contractual discrimination;
b) for the enhancement of welfare, against the logic of conciliation between domestic and extra-domestic work;
c) for the right to abortion, medically assisted contraception and self-determination;
d) for the full regularization of female immigrant workers;
e) against sexism and domestic violence.
Mobilization has to connect with the entire class movement on an international and international scale: the ongoing USA struggles against the police, its supremacist and racist violence and the brutal murders; the movements of opposition to the environmental devastation produced by capitalism, which has animated and continues to animate millions of young people in all four corners of the earth; the struggles, resistance and real uprisings against imperialism and its effects, and nationalistic policies promoted by the Western bourgeoisie.
Therefore, the 27th September assembly proposes:
1) to bring together the various struggle initiatives and strikes that may develop in the coming weeks, building convergence and unification paths with the mobilization of the unemployed, the strikes against environmental devastation and developing solidarity networks;
2) to organize a day of national initiative for the next 24th October, developing actions in different territories and realities using local assemblies and coordination among the relations built in today’s assembly;
3) to give continuity to this open and collective path of convergence between different sectors and class subjectivities, to develop – by the end of the year – a process of struggle generalization and therefore also of a general strike, to counter the general employers’ offensive including work contracts, education and healthcare issues, and governmental economic policies;
4) to call combative workers and organizations of struggle from all over Europe to build a common initiative including the following themes: drastic and generalized reduction of working hours for equal wages to face redundancies and unemployment; uniformity of social safety nets by raising the salary; taxation of great wealth; strenuous defence of the right to strike and trade union agency, elimination of European immigration control policies.
PS: The assembly also approved four more items that we will publish later (for an initiative and proposal to European workers, for a clear stance in solidarity with the Black Live Matters movement, for a women workers’ unified platform, to combat the current work butcheries and to claim safety at the workplace).