International mobilization against IKEA to reinstate 24 fired workers in Piacenza (Italy)

On Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th July 2014, rallies have been organized outside 13 IKEA stores all over Italy. Workers and supporters were there in solidarity with workers at the central warehouse in Piacenza: 24 of them were fired by the IKEA subcontracting company they work for because of their unionization and the struggles they have been conducting since 2012 to improve their working conditions and in order to obtain fairer wages.

The 26th July was the first day of a campaign launched by S.I. Cobas and ADL Cobas, the two main unions organizing the workers of the logistics sector. Many organizations (alternative media, students’ collectives, other trade unions, ecc.) embraced the struggle and were present in 13 cities, spreading the solidarity also across Italy’s boundaries, with rallies organized in Cordoba (Spain), Berlin (Germany), Vienna (Austria) and Hamburg (Germany).

In Italy the main rally was in Piacenza, with workers and people in solidarity joining also from other Italian cities (mainly from Lombardia and Emilia Romagna). Protesters clashed with the police, which tried to prevent workers protesting for their fellows blocking the warehouse's entrances. One demonstrator was injured. Still, the other workers went on protesting, moving to Parma in the afternoon. There, they demonstrated inside and outside the local IKEA store.

Other rallies were organized in Turin, Pisa, Florence, Padua, Milan, Ancona, Gorizia, Naples, Salerno, Mantova, Genova, Rome and were participated by dozens of people handing out thousands of leaflets that clients could leave to the cash registers in order to let the IKEA’s management know their solidarity with the workers fired in Piacenza.

The campaign will go on until the 24 workers will be reinstated by the subcontractor. IKEA cannot hide itself behind this byzantine subcontracting system. IKEA has the power to oblige its subcontractors to treat their workers with dignity and respect. Workers
know very well who is the real boss, irrespective of who pays their wages at the end of the month; that is why they are addressing mainly IKEA.


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