Duvar EnglishTurkish labor unions demand paid time off and increased pensions to combat coronavirus
The Platform of Istanbul Labor Union Branches blasted the initiative of an industrialists' union to hang electronic tracking devices from the necks of workers, calling the measure “downright slavery” in a statement on Wednesday.
“Using the excuse of social distancing and protection against the coronavirus, every moment and every movement made by the workers can be tracked by this device that will be placed around their necks,” said the union in their statement.
The 'Mess-Safe' device (mesafe is the Turkish word for 'distance') was devised by a software company hired by Turkey's largest employers' union, the Turkish Metal Industrialists' Union (MESS).
The Istanbul Labor Union Branches Platform has accused MESS of not taking proper precautions against the virus. They also criticized the Independent Industrialists and Businessman's Association (MÜSİAD) for drafting a “work camp” project in which thousands of workers would be isolated from the outside world and live in camps while on the production lines.
“We do not accept these slavery-like methods from MESS and MÜSİAD, who are turning the pandemic into an opportunity while workers and laborers toil away at work fearing unemployment and hunger on the one hand, or contracting the virus on the other,” the platform said in its statement.Turkey's workers 'don't want to die' from poor conditions amid COVID-19 outbreak