Turkey’s major labor and trade unions released a petition April 1, introducing a list of seven recommendations to the government for the fight against COVID-19.
The Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions of Turkey (DISK), Confederation of Public Employees Trade Unions (KESK), Union of Chambers of Turkish Engineers and Architects (TMMOB), and the Turkish Medical Association (TTB) put their names on the petition where they said they “reminded the government of the urgency of the included preventative measures.”
The first recommendation was that all non-urgent and non-essential production and services be immediately ceased.
The second item said that all layoffs should be banned during the pandemic, small businesses and the unemployed should be compensated, and all employees must receive paid time off.
The third item urged that all payments on consumer, residential and transportation loans should be postponed without interest, as well as electricity, water, heat and communication bills.Turkey has shortage of 15,000 critical care nurses, labor representative warns
The fourth item suggested that private health institutions be turned over to the state for public use and that all healthcare become free of charge to everyone.
The fifth item noted that in the fight against COVID-19 the scientific approach must dominate and, consequently, all test results must be released constantly and transparently.
The sixth item called for widespread testing, the immediate restock of protective personal equipment, and the prioritzation of surgeons, health and municipal workers in the distribution of said equipment.
The seventh and final item urged legislation to protect parts of society most vulnerable to COVID-19, namely low or no income households, migrants, and inmates.