Pakistani brick workers' sit-in wins fight

Monday, May 5, 2014
Brick kiln workers protest in Lahore.

A four-day sit-in by brick kiln workers in Lahore in late April ended after successful negotiations held with the labour minister over their demand of implementation of a minimum rate of 740 rupee (about $8.1) per thousand bricks. Workers from all over the Punjab took part in this sit-in.

After daily threats by government and police, the labour minster finally agreed to negotiate with leaders of the workers. Brick kiln workers are among the most exploited in Pakistan. There is widespread use of child labour and debt bondage ― both against the law in Pakistan.

The protest was organised by the Labour Qaumi Movement and the Bhatta Mazdoor Union. It was supported by the Awami Workers Party (AWP). AWP general secretary Farooq Tariq will be an international guest speaker at the June 7-9 10th national conference of Socialist Alliance.

From GLW issue 1007