UNI strongly condemns death threat made against Colombian union leader Eric Amador Toro and calls on President Santos to take action
UNI Global Union strongly condemns a death threat made against Eric Amador Toro, the National Treasurer of the Union of Colombian Health Workers, SINTRASALUDCOL (UNICARE affiliate) in Colombia.
Mr Amador received the death threat in a letter which said the union leader “had been targeted as a military objective for his ‘condemnations’ expressed as a member of the SINTRASALUDCOL Union”. The letter demanded Mr Amador stop work and leave his city if he wanted to avoid endangering his life and that of his family. The letter further threatened that “there will be no second communication”.
It is the duty of the Colombian government to protect all its citizens and to ensure that those persons who are responsible for making such unacceptable threats and who perpetrate acts of violence against the trade union movement are brought to justice.
UNI Global Union General Secretary Philip Jennings has immediately intervened by writing to President Santos of Colombia and calling on him to do everything in his power to stop this attack on yet another union leader, “When I met with President Santos in Davos in January, I congratulated him on the progress of the peace process. I also reminded him of his responsibility to stop attacks on unions leaders who have long been the targets of those who seek to prevent freedom of speech and freedom of association in Colombia. 3700 union members among 222000 victims of the fifty year war paid the ultimate price. Eric Amador Toro must not become another statistic and this violence must not continue. President Santos must show that Colombia will not tolerate such threats and attacks in the this new era of ‘peace’. Our message is clear – this must stop now.”
In view of this alarming situation, UNI Global Union, and the entire international community demand that the safety of Mr Amador and his family be respected and safeguarded.
We make this appeal in the name of UNI Global Union, an international trade union federation that represents workers in the services sector with more than 20 million members and 900 affiliated unions.