workers' rights

In 2019, European and legislative elections will take place in Portugal in a national political context different from anywhere else in the European Union (EU), where austerity policies still reign and the racist and xenophobic right is rising, writes Dick Nichols from Lisbon.

Over the past three years in Portugal, the minority Socialist Party (PS) government has been supported from outside by the Left Bloc, the Communist Party of Portugal (PCP) and the Ecologist Party-The Greens (PEV).

Tech giant Google was hit by an unprecedented global walkout on November 1 as female staff led colleagues off the job in protest against sexual harassment.

Workers left their desks at 11.10am local time in offices from Tokyo to San Francisco, including in Singapore, Zurich, London and Dublin.

The Walkout for Real Change was originally organised by female software engineers in the United States. It rattled company CEO Sundar Pichai, who was prompted to express support for it.

Shockwaves were sent around the world when fascist candidate Jair Bolsonaro won 55% in the second round in Brazil’s presidential elections on October 28, defeating Fernando Haddad of the Workers’ Party (PT).

Brian Mier, editor of Brasil Wire and Voices of the Brazilian Left: Dispatches From a Coup in Progress, spoke to Green Left Weekly’s Federico Fuentes about the victory of fascist candidate Jair Bolsonaro in Brazil’s presidential elections, and what it means for the coming period.

Hundreds of public servants rallied outside Queensland's parliament on October 30 as part of a week-long industrial campaign. The rally was organised by Together Union (a branch of the Australian Services Union), also known as the "Purple Army".

The workers are facing enterprise bargaining negotiations in which the state government is refusing to offer any pay rise. The government argues that since workers have had a wage rise due to a rise in the award, they do not need to offer any rise in the enterprise agreement. The agreement will last for the next three years.

Scotland’s largest city was brought to a standstill as women workers made history in Britain’s largest-ever strike over equal pay on October 24 and 25.

Care workers, cleaners and school dinner workers were among 8000 women council employees and contractors staging a two-day walkout in Glasgow.

They formed picket lines to demand back payments for being paid less than council workers in male-dominated departments.

About a third of Victoria's firefighters have experienced bullying in the workplace and more than 95% believe that negative media coverage of their campaigns for new enterprise bargaining agreements had profoundly damaged workplace morale and led to "public aggression" and a "reluctance to disclose their occupation".

Workers at Esso’s Longford gas plant in Victoria have been picketing for more than 470 days after the company sacked 230 workers and demanded they reapply for their jobs under a new agreement that would slash pay and conditions.

Workers from five Alcoa sites throughout Western Australia voted at a mass meeting in Pinjarra on September 28 to end their seven-week strike. The vote occurred after the Australian Workers’ Union (AWU), which covers the 1600 Alcoa workers, secured an agreement guaranteeing job security and ensuring that no workers would be replaced through casualisation, contracting or labour-hire companies.

Tory-supporting media have been portraying Britain’s socialist Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn as a Soviet fellow-traveller. Meanwhile, Hilary Wainwright notes, Labour’s shadow chancellor and close Corbyn ally sets out a vision that breaks with the old bureaucratic state model.

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell can usually barely breathe a word about nationalisation without setting off a media frenzy, so it’s strange that his most interesting comments yet on the subject passed with so little comment.

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