UNI WEB condemns Colombian government’s disregard for attack on leading care union
The World Executive Board of UNI Global Union denounced the ongoing attack on SINTRASALUDCOL, one of Colombia’s largest healthcare unions. UNI is calling for the necessary investment to be made to ensure quality healthcare and good jobs. If these investments are not made, more than 17,000 workers will lose their jobs, and one of the country’s most progressive unions will be decimated.
SINTRASALUDCOL members who work at health care providers ESIMED and MEDIMAS have been protesting the attack on their union and their jobs for more than 110 days. The union says that the companies have been mismanaged and starved of resources for years—especially since the Colombian government intervened in 2011 in a predecessor company.
The union has been doing everything possible to try to save the health care provides. On November 22, the Government and the company will meet, if they don’t come up with a solution 17,000 workers—almost all members of SINTRASALUDCOL—will lose their jobs.
The union is fighting in defense of the rights of workers, quality health care, and for the government to undermining the financial stability of the clinics.
These demands come in a time of great unrest in Colombia. There has been an uptick of violence, murders, and threats against social activists since the election of President Iván Duque. In fact, SINTRASALUDCOL leaders have been threatened because of their stances against corruption and violations of workers’ rights.
Below is the motion passed by the WEB today:
UNI Global Union's Executive Committee met on November 14 - 15, 2018, and strongly condemned the Colombian government's disregard for SaludCoop Group's intervention and looting, and its attempt to destroy the SINTRASALUDCOL union.
The members of this Committee express our solidarity with our brothers and sisters of SINTRASALUDCOL, who are actively occupying clinics and hospitals, putting up a strong fight to make the Government and the company take action, since the future of 17,000 health workers is at risk.
We also strongly condemn the death threats received by several leaders in the past years, due to their constant accusations of irregularities and lack of transparency in this whole process, and to their tireless struggle to improve their working conditions and provide quality of care.
These companies have an urgent and unsustainable health emergency. We demand MEDIMAS, ESIMED S.A and Duque's government to make the necessary investment to ensure a decent healthcare system and good working conditions.