Cairo 19 February, 2018
The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) today launched the third issue of the Worker’s Guide Series entitled “How to lead a successful labor strike?”
It is the third guide issued by the “Freedom of Expression for Workers and Social Movements” program of the Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI).
The guide comes in 36 small pocket-size pages, it complements the first guide on collective negotiation between unions and employers, and the second guide on the legal and procedural mediation and arbitration process.
The third guide deals with the process of workers’ strike as a right of workers to improve working conditions, or to achieve some social demands that affect their lives.
The guide uses a Q&A style, it defines a strike as an element of basic public freedoms, a legitimate means for workers to defend their professional interests, then it highlights the constitutional provisions that guarantee the right to peaceful strike.
The guide provided separate definitions for workers’ strikes in both the public and private sector establishments, as well as the strike of public officials in government institutions and the reasons and motives behind each of them.
The guide went on to define the various types of strikes and divided them into the total, slowdown, reciprocal, partial, short, repetitive, solidarity and the sudden strikes, the guide also discusses the difference between a strike and a sit-in.
It then explains the conditions of a strike, divided into formal and objective conditions, and other conditions, such as that the strike is to stop working, a strike ought to be collective, and a strike should have a professional goal.
The guide then explains the conditions that must be met for the success of a strike and outlines it in having a committee to lead the the strike, this committee should be equipped with the knowledge and information that affirms the legitimacy of the workers’ demands, and shall prioritize the list of the target demands. The strikers should also form another committee to provide the minimum requirements of strikers of food and drink throughout the strike from a support fund for strikes and protests, or to arrange other means of providing for the needs of striking workers easily.
The “Strike Fund” should also compensate leaders and workers who are subjected to abuse by the employer in the form of sanctions and/or reducing bonuses. The fund must be created a long time ahead of the strike.
The strike leadership should form a media committee to communicate with the media, to explain the legitimacy of the demands made by the strikers, write down the demands of the workers, the strike leadership should also appoint a spokesperson to speak on its behalf. The strike leadership should form a group for the “collective negotiation” process with the administration.
The Arabic Network for Human Rights Information (ANHRI) said: “We provide these guides so that the workers know their legal and fair rights as stipulated in the Egyptian constitution and international conventions, to confront the intimidation and repression campaigns by the authorities that aim to prevent different groups from knowing their legitimate rights. We also provide these guides so that the workers know the tools of pressure and negotiation as part of the legitimate methods for improving working conditions.”