National Day of Struggle - Brasil do Fato
National Day of Struggle: Track mobilizations across the country
Follow coverage of the mobilizations, strikes, occupations and road blockades realized on Thursday (July 11) around the country
Unified mobilization block disposal plants in Alagoas
Unions and movements struggling for land blocked access to the Port of Maceió, the main outlet for production of the sugarcane industry in Alagoas
by Railton Teixeira, Maceió, Alagoas
Earlier on Thursday (11), hundreds of workers organized in peasant movements, trade unions and students blocked the entrance to the Port of Maceió (AL) in the neighborhood of the Jaragua. Protesters continue the Unified National Day of Struggle, which conducts a day of strikes and demonstrations across the country around an agenda of structural reforms.
The trade unions and movements of students and peasants are together demanding rights and social reforms to advance Brazil, among which the reduction of working hours to 40 hours per week without loss of pay and rejection of PL 4330, which loosens labor rights through outsourcing. The agenda of the free [transit] pass and public transport, urban reform and agrarian reform were also prominent.
For Deborah Nunes, form the national coordination of the Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST), unified mobilization is a new direction to those who fight for social change in Brazil. "We support the implementation of agrarian reform and other structural reforms, an agenda already deep throughout Brazilian society, but not yet realized," she explained.
Among other points that unify the various organizations of the working class in Brazil today is the application of 10% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the education sector and 10% to the health sector. In full year 2013, the public debt service still consumes more than 40% of the budget, preventing investment in strategic areas for social development, such as land policy and education.
Peasants block major highways of Alagoas
The blockades started in the first hours and should extend throughout the day in order to get the message that "the stuggle has never stopped"
by Railton Teixeira, Maceió, Alagoas
Earlier on Thursday (July 11), peasant social movements blocked some major roads of Alagoas in adherence to the guidance of Via Campesina in the municipalities to organize this National Day of Struggle. The blockades started in the first hours and should extend throughout the day in order to get the message that "the struggle has never stopped."
Roads were blocked in the municipalities of Murici, União dos Palmares, Flexeiras, Novo Lino, Atalaia and Joaquim Gomes (forest area). Porto Calvo and Maragogi (coastal), Arapiraca, Girau Ponciano (uncultivated), Delmiro Gouveia, Olho D’Água do Casado e Olho D’água das Flores (sertão [semi-arid region of the Northeast]), and some cities in the low and mid São Francisco.
The mobilization has membership of the Liberation Movement of the Landless (MLST), Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST), Movement Land, Labor and Freedom (MTL) and the Pastoral Land Commission (CPT).
According Josival Oliveira, national leader of the MLST, rural workers were never silenced and always hold their demonstrations. According to him, the ways to protest today follow the same methodology adopted by peasant social movements.
Also according to him, land reform still remains the main banner of struggle that mobilizes the activities of peasant social movements. Adding to this, numerous other guidelines related to education, health, security, infrastructure and public policy, responsible for setting of rural workers in their land, are the main challenges encountered in the peasant struggle. "That's why our staff will be in our home towns, with blocking highways, so this way we can show society that at no time do we remain silent in the face of the oppressive system which kills rural workers and burns their homes" emphasized Oliveira.
He also pointed out that the federal government's intention is to stifle public policies in the countryside, thus taking the welfare programs, offered to city workers, from the farmers. In addition, they are blocking the resources allocated for agrarian reform settlements. "Thereby causing, in this way, the arbitrariness and atrocities perpetrated by the large estates. There being no guarantees in the law, plantation owners assume the right to send their gunmen to intimidate workers and thus enforce the militarization of the sugar plant," Oliveira concluded.
Buses circulated normally in Salvador, but many banks are closed in the city. The BR-324, the main highway between the capital and the interior was blocked, as well as Via Parafuso, which gives access to the Polo Petrochemical Plant of Camaçari. A group of demonstrators protested near Feira de Santana. The protesters are focusing on Avenida Sete, in the center, where there will be actions at 11 AM.
People affected by the dams join the trade unions in Fortaleza
The MAB (Movement of People Affected the Dams) and other organizations are in the streets fighting against privatization, for the end of the auction of oil fields and against the hydroelectric plants
The unions and social movements held demonstrations across the country on Thursday (July 11) and in Fortaleza there is happening a great act of the working class unity in the Ferreira Square, in the city center.
Besides the people affected by the dams and the landless, the mobilization has also attended by metallurgical, chemical, commercial and rural, workers in the food industry, construction workers, seamstresses, sanitation and maintenance employees, bakers, couriers, household workers, among others.
The Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAB) and other organizations are in the streets fighting against privatization, the end of the auction of oil and hydroelectric plants, for lower rates on electricity, land reform and the rights of people affected by dams and for a plebiscite for political reform, among other issues.
Besides these, the agendas of workers demand the end of the security factor [used to calculate social security benefits, introduced during the presidency of Fernando Henrique Cardoso, 10% of GDP to health, 10% of GDP to education, reduction of working hours to 40 hours; valuation of pensions [to increase based on inflation and other factors]; quality public transportation, changes in the auctions of oil leases; rejection of PL 4330 [legislation on outsourcing], political reform, urban reform and democratization of the media.
In the Federal District, MST occupies national INCRA office and blockades highways
The movement will also attend the Unified March of the Working Class, which will take place at the esplanade of the Ministries
Pagina do MST
On Thursday (July 11), the Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST) held the national headquarters of the National Institute of Colonization and Agrarian Reform (INCRA), in Brasília (DF). The purpose of mobilization is to require resumption of land reform by the national government.
According to Maria Lucimar da Silva, leader of the MST in the Federal District, land reform is completely paralyzed and INCRA has not fulfilled its role.
"The government has to reduce bureaucracy and throw out “policy of paper.” Dialogue only is not enough, we want to see the results in practice, with the settlement of 150,000 families in encampments, with the implementation of new credit that benefits the settlers and settlements. And especially that INCRA work for the development of agrarian reform and not cut it short," he says.
Integrating with the agenda of the national mobilization, BR 020 (km 103) was blockaded from 6 o'clock in the morning. 400 people from the MST, Popular Peasant Movement (MCP) and Associations of Flores de Goiás participated in the action. The region has about 30 settlements and farmers are responsible for supplying the food production for the local population. BR 188, the perimeter of Unaí - Minas Gerais, is also blocked.
The actions are part of the day of mobilizations of labor unions, political organizations and movements of the working class to take to the streets of the country this July 11.
In Brasilia, the movement also attended the Unified March of the Working Class, which took place at the Esplanade of the Ministries.
At the bus station of Vitória, the buses were stopped, as well as passenger trains of the Railway Vitória a Minas (EFVM). Taxi drivers also joined the movement. Hospitals only met urgent and emergency cases. A group of protesters is concentrated at the Federal University of Espírito Santo, and will then marched up to the Legislature, which has been busy the last 2 days. In Old Town, the Military Police blocked the passage of vehicles at the Third Bridge, where a group of protesters gathered. They marched to Vitória.
Thousands of Goianese peasants participate in national strike
The fight is part of the national strike for reforms and economic and social change, articulated between popular movements, trade unions and the working class
About three thousand family farmers from the Popular Peasant Movement, mobilized, on Thursday (July 11), demonstrations Goiania, Catalan, Flores de Goiás and Itapaci with public events and road closures. The fight is part of the national strike for reforms and economic and social change, articulated between popular movements, trade unions and the working class. In Goiás, the National Day of Struggle counted more than 60,000 demonstrators. Throughout Brazil, thousands of workers, people living in rural area, by the water and forests participated in demonstrations. In Goiânia, the public act had concentrations at 10 am in the Plaza of the Bandeirante and the highways were closed in BR020 in the intersection of Flores in Goiás, in BR 153 in the intersection of Itapaci and BR 050 in Catalão at the intersection of mining roads.
The common agenda of demands, entitled Letter to the Workers of Brazil, covers ten items: national sovereignty over land, agrarian reform, structural policies for youth and women, agro-ecological food production, people's rights, banning pesticides and GMOs, deforestation control, cancellation of privatization of natural resources, rural schools and end the tax break to large exporters. The document is signed by the organizations: ABEEF, OPEN, JOINS, ANA, APIB, CIMI, CONAQ, CONTAG ENEBIO, FEAB, FETRAF, MAB, MAM, MCP, MMC, MPA, MPP, MST, PJR, SINPAF and Via Campesina.
In the countryside, there is a huge social debt and inequalities are increasing. About 8,300 large landowners, alone, own 83 million acres, while 4.3 million families of workers of peasant and family farming have 70 million hectares. However, peasant farming is responsible for producing 70% of food that goes to table the Brazilian people.
In Goiás, the situation is even more serious, by its location in the center of agribusiness. The structure of the land in the state, which has one of the highest concentration in Brazil, has been built by the forces that oppose democratization of land. Goias has 88,400 family farms that occupy 8,228,000 acres, with an average of 8.9 acres per farm. Family farmers are responsible for the production of staple foods that supply most products to the table of Goiás. Given this situation, the MCP also expresses its dissatisfaction and will go to the streets once again, the peasant agenda for discussion. Social struggles are legitimate and they can only improve the living conditions of the people.
Those affected by the Serra da Mesa hydroelectric dam protest in northern Goiás
The approximately 250 protesters demand a decrease in the price of electricity, improvements in health and education and a policy of rights for those affected by dams
On Thursday (July 11), people affected by the Serra da Mesa dam, in Goiás, returned to the streets of the city center in Uruaçu in order to demand from municipal, state and federal public authorities better living conditions for the population. The demonstrations reinforce protests throughout Brazil staged by Labor Unions and Social Movements in the countryside and the city.
The approximately 250 protesters, organized in the Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAB), demanded decreases in the price of electricity, improvements in health and education and a policy to direct affected by dams.
According Agenor Costa e Silva, coordinator of the MAB in Goiás, "dams in the region have left serious negative consequences for families, many of them have not yet received compensation and families living by the river had to come and live in the city to survive." He further states that those affected want a rights policy not just on the paper so that the needs of the families can be met.
"The report of the National Council of Defense of Human Rights (CDDPH) recognizes that in the region there are serious human rights violations and then nothing was accomplished by the companies responsible for the works, much less by the Brazilian government. The creation of the policy is the least the government can do, "said the coordinator.
MST closes BR 222 in the region of Itapecuru in Maranhão
With more than 300 people, the protest is against the invasion of peasant and quilombo territory by and agri-businessess
Pagina do MST
As part of the demonstrations of the National Day of Struggle, on Thursday (July 11), organized by trade union centrals and social movements in Brazil, the Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST) in Maranhão, along with teacher organizations, students, rural labor unions, quilombo and local communities, occupied BR 222, at the entrance of the city of Vargem Grande.
With more than 300 people, the protest is against the invasion of peasant and quilombo territories by agribusiness companies, for better infrastructure in the settlements and schools, and for youth policies.
Protesters proceed to collect the city municipal demands.
MATO GROSSO DO SUL
About 12,000 people gathered in the square Rádio in Campo Grande (MS), to participate in a unified acts during the morning, according to the Military Police. Militants from the Federation of Education Workers of Mato Grosso do Sul (Fetems), from the Federation of Agricultural Workers of Mato Grosso do Sul (Fetagri) and from the Union of Workers in Construction and Furniture Campo Grande (Sintracom), plus agents of the Company Independent Policing Transit Capital (Ciptran), Municipal Transit Agency (Agetran) and farmers linked to the MST participated.
MST participates in mobilization in Triangulo Mineiro
The mobilization started at 2 PM, with a concentration in Tubal Vilela Square, in the city center. Then follow on protesters walk along Avenida João Naves to the town hall
Pagina do MST
On Thursday (July 11), about 100 families of the Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST) participate in unified acts with trade union centrals and social movements, along with other social movements, trade unions and left parties in Uberlândia, in Triangulo Mineiro (MG)
The mobilization started at 2 PM, with a concentration in Tubal Vilela Square, in the city center. Then follow on protesters walk along Avenida João Naves to city hall, where they handed a list of demands to the mayor Gilmar Machado (PT).
In Uberlândia, protests demanded fare reduction and improved public transport, 10% of the national budget for public health, no privatization of university hospitals, reduction of working hours to 40 hours without loss of pay, shelving PL 4330 that implements the outsourcing of labor and ends with the guarantee of workers' rights, suspension of auctions of oil, against changing the Mineral Code and for the realization of the land reform program, among other demands.
The mobilization is part of the Unified National Labor Unions and Social Movements, performing demonstrations and strikes throughout the country on Thursday, to claim a political platform with the reduction of working hours, investment of 10% of GDP in health and education, free and quality public transport, media democratization and land reform, with the settlement of 150,000 families camped in the country.
Residents of Novo Brasil demand improvements in municipal health
Among the guidelines is the change in municipal management, health care improvements, implementation of a public hospital, proper functioning of health centers and implementation where none exist
Around 300 residents of the municipality of Novo Brasil in Pará protested in front of the city hall to demand improvements in the health of the city. The protesters met at the airfield of the city and went on a march around town.
Among the guidelines is the change in municipal management, health care improvements, implementation of a public hospital, proper functioning of health centers (where they exist) and implementation where they don’t exist, in neighborhoods and rural communities, and ensuring water quality and in sufficient quantity for all the families of the rural villages and seats of the municipality.
"It's a shame a city like Novo Brasil, in the face of all the impacts caused by the Belo Monte dam, not having a public hospital, because health is a right of the people and not a commodity," said Claret Fernandes, activist of the Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAB) and the parish priest of the town.
After sharing several testimonials about how these health problems affect people's lives, including deaths from medical errors, the protesters decided to forward the complaints to the Pará Society for the Defense of Human Rights. In addition, the Mayor is committed to schedule a public hearing to submit solutions.
The actions were organized by the Commission for Justice and Peace (CJP), MAB, Acampamento Novo Horizonte, Levante Popular Youth and Youth Ministry. At the end of the activity, the protesters pasted posters on the door of the city hall and wrote messages of protest on the ground.
Social movements occupy 21 toll plazas in Paraná
Reducing the toll, land reform, public policies for peasant agriculture and popular plebiscite are the main points of demand
From 9 o'clock this Thursday (July 11), members of social movements, organizations and unions organized around a common political platform freed the passage of vehicles at 21 toll plazas in Paraná, under national day of strike and working class struggle.
The mobilization aims to require the immediate reduction of tolls collected today by the dealers who administer the toll plazas, whose price is one of the highest in the country. Workers also demand from the government the implementation of land reform, for the immediate settlement of thousands of families in encampments, since, in the state of Paraná alone there are about six thousand families in encampments.
Protesters also demand public policy support, incentives and credit for producing cheap, healthy food without poisons, with the strengthening of the peasantry and the adoption of structural programs for youth and rural women. In addition, they also support all popular demands and necessity for political reform and demand the immediate convocation of a popular plebiscite.
Opening the toll plazas were: Campo Mourão, Corbélia, Cascavel, Santa Terezinha do Itaipu, Céu Azul, Nova Laranjeiras, Candói, Guarapuava, Presidente Castelo Branco, Floresta, Mandaguari, Arapongas, Jataizinho, Sertaneja, Cambará, Mauá da Serra , Imbaú, Irati, Lapa, São Luiz do Purunã e Litoral.
In Recife, the protests of the National Day of Struggle concentrated in the industrial port of Suape where some federal roads were occupied by protesters. The BR-232 is locked at 143 km in front of an MST settlement. Other routes, such as the BR-116, BR-428, BR-194 and BR-101, are also occupied in some sections.
RIO DE JANEIRO
Protests block highways in the state of Rio de Janeiro
In addition to the national guidelines, the protesters in Macaé ask for a reduction of spending by the city hall and the city council and for basic sanitation throughout the municipality
Vitor Abdala, Agência Brasil
Protesters blocked in the early morning of Thursday (July 11) a bridge connecting the towns of River Oysters and Macaé, north of Rio de Janeiro. The protest, coordinated by the Union of Oil Workers of North Fluminense (Sindipetro-NF) and the Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST), and had the participation of other social movements.
About 5 am, they closed the highway connecting the two cities and set fire to tires in the front of the Parque dos Tubos in locality Imboassica in Macaé. In addition to the national guidelines, the protesters ask Macaé to reduce the spending of the city and the city council and for basic sanitation throughout the county.
In the metropolitan area, protesters occupied lanes of BR-463, in the municipality of Itaguaí. They set fire to tires and sticks in front of the headquarters of Nuclebras Heavy Equipment (Nuclep), the state owned company that manufactures submarine hulls and equipment for oil rigs and nuclear plants. According to the Federal Highway Police, the protest was fast and the lanes are already opened.
According to a spokesperson for the Nuclep, the Itaguaí factory is closed today because their employees have joined the national strike and participated in demonstrations outside the state.
RIO GRANDE DO SUL
Protesters blockade bus exits and the highway in Erechim (RS)
The protesters, who continue the occupation throughout the day, demanding 100% quality public transport with free passes for students and low-income workers
In the early hours of Thursday (July 11), around 150 people occupied the front of the company Gaurama, single concessionaire responsible for public transportation in the city of Erechim for over 60 years, in Rio Grande do Sul, preventing the buses from leaving.
The protest was organized by the Bloc of Popular Struggles, a coalition that brings together students from the Universidade Federal da Fronteira Sul (UFFS), Seção Sindical dos Docentes da UFFS (SINDUFFS), Associação dos Docentes da UFFS (ADUFFS), Central Única dos Trabalhadores (CUT), Sindicato dos Comerciários, Sindicato da Alimentação, Sindicato dos Metalúrgicos, Kizomba, Marcha Mundial das Mulheres, Levante Popular da Juventude, A.D.R., Movimento dos Atingidos por Barragens (MAB), Contraste Movimento LGBT.
Movements of Via Campesina, Fetraf and urban movements also blocked this morning BR 153, in two sections that give access Erechim. The nearly 800 militants claim the immediate release of the Program for Promotion, Enhancement and Sustainability of peasant agriculture, in addition to supporting the demand for the reduction of working hours to 40 hours.
More than 15,000 metalurical workers demand government economic policy for workers
Among the factories that had stopped their production are General Motors, Embraer, Avibras and TI Automotive
Sindimetal / SJC
More than 15,000 metallurgical workers from 20 plants participated in demonstrations for the National Day of Demonstrations, Strikes and Shutdowns in São José dos Campos, Jacarei and Cacapava, in São Paulo, on Thursday (July 11). Among the factories that had stopped its production are General Motors, Embraer, Avibras and TI Automotive. There was still occupation of the Presidente Dutra highway in three spots in the region.
At GM, the metalworkers went on strike for 24 hours and stopped the Via Dutra, km 142, São José dos Campos, by 2:15 AM. There were also shutdowns of highway access to Embraer and Cacapava. At Embraer, the production was delayed by three hours. The demonstrations also caused delays in other factories in the sector and the Aerospace Technical Center (CTA).
With lines of marches, workers of all factories demanded from the Dilma government an economic policy in favor of workers, with measures such as the reduction of the working day, the end of the security factor, the adoption of national metalworkers' collective contract, the end of the outsourcing and other demands, such as an end to corruption and the confiscation of property of corrupt and corrupting.
The metallurgical workers from Avibras (unit IV) stopped 100% of production and will only return to work tomorrow. In addition to the demands of the class, they are also fighting against the delay in payment of wages, which have not paid to the workers since May 30. The Avibras factory has 1,200 employees and produces military equipment. It currently has a contract with the Brazilian Navy.
In the city of Cacapava, two companies stopped: Graúna, a provider of Embraer, and Blue Tech, a supplier of LG and formed mainly by women. Metallurgical workers from two plants teamed up and stopped the Via Dutra for two hours, between km 127 and 132.
Workers of the Graúna continue to rally in Cacapava Forum, where they will demand the release of payment of labor rights, as FGTS severance payment. The company has a debt accumulated labor in U.S. $ 3.5 million.
In Jacarei, workers of five factories attended the National Day of Strikes. In four of them (Parker Hannifin, Emerson, Schrader and DMT), the downtime is 24 hours. In Wirex Cable, the production was stopped for 2 hours.
"The National Day of Mobilizations, Strikes and Shutdowns already entered the history of workers' struggles in the country, and the metalworkers of our region had a very important role. After the victorious protests led by youth, came time for workers to demand of President Dilma an economic policy that favors the country's workers. It's time the government meets our demands and takes action in favor of the working class," says the president of the Metalworkers Union of São José dos Campos, Antonio Ferreira de Barros, Macapá.
The demonstrations are being called by all the unions in the country, with a unified agenda, which includes: reduction of working hours; end of pension factor and increase of pensions; against PL 4330 promoting outsourcing, reduction of the price and improvement in the quality of public transport, more investment in public health and education, land reform, and the end of auction of oil reserves.
In Tocantins, people affected by the dam block the Estreito hydroelectric plant
The demonstration demands the immediate resettlement of over 800 families who have been camped since the inauguration of the dam, which occurred on the 17th of October last year
This morning (July 11), approximately 900 of people affected blocked the entrance of the Estreito Power Plant in the state of Tocantins. The protest is organized by the Movement of People Affected by Dams (MAB) and the Movement of Landless Rural Workers (MST).
The demonstration demands the immediate resettlement of over 800 families who set up a camp since the inauguration of the plant, which took place on October 17 last year.
Moreover, those affected require a water supply, both for families camped and for families settled, and a program of economic compensation for the fishermen, because of the dramatic decrease in fish due to the dam.
"We will not accept that a work that generates profit for private companies will let more than 800 affected families without land, without water and without power. The Brazilian state can no longer be omitted and hope for the immediate adoption of a national policy of rights for those affected by dams," said national coordinator of the MAB, Cirineu da Rocha.
The Esterito Hydroelectric Plant, built by Energy Consortium (Ceste), formed by GDF Suez, Vale, Alcoa and Camargo Corrêa, is located on the Tocantins River, the border between the states of Maranhão and Tocantins, with total capacity of 1,087 MW, enough to meet the needs of a city with 4 million inhabitants.