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Announcement :: Labor
Tuesday: Come Hear from Argentina's Recovered Factories and Unemployed Worker Movements!
07 Nov 2005
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FIRE THE BOSS! ECHAN LOS PATRONES!
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In the wake of the rebellion outside Bush's Summit of the Americas...

Come hear from Argentina's Recovered Factories and Unemployed Worker Movements!

Tuesday. November 8. 5 pm.

45 Mount Auburn Street
Just blocks from Harvard Square

Including...

Carlos Alberto Barra - Unemployed Worker Movement (MTD Allen)
Noelia Lecerfs - Worker at recovered enterprise Hotel Bauen
Eulalia Alicia Perez - United Cooperative of Shoe-Makers Ex-Adidas Factory
Elsa Montero - Worker at recovered health clinic Clinica Fenix (x-IMECC)

Sponsored by Harvard Student Labor Action Movement (SLAM)

History:

In 2001, Argentina’s economy collapsed. Factories began closing and foreign banks began pulling their money out of the country, leaving the poor of the country to fend for themselves. But the workers in Argentina didn’t take this lying down. Instead they started to organize.

Workers took control over their factories, seized the machines and once again started to produce, without the boss. The unemployed movements continued to provide for the unmet needs of their communities, creating bakeries, cooperatives, and community gardens to provide food and jobs.

Workers from Argentina and North America will share their experiences on the shop floor, in their communities, and in the streets. We will create a space where we can learn from each others struggles, find common ground, and forge strategies for international solidarity.

Speakers:

Carlos Alberto Barra is coming from the Movimiento de Trabajadores Desocupados (MTD - Unemployed Worker Movement) Allen in Rio Negro.

MTD Allen is a movement of unemployed workers that uses direct action street blockades to demand everything from political reforms to food. They attempt to live outside of capitalism, producing everything possible themselves in workshops like an organic farm, chicken and rabbit
hatcheries, a community kitchen, a hair cuttery, and a canned foods group. The MTD Allen maintains a collective space for meetings, popular education, productive workshops, and collective meals. Through the Coordination of Autonomous Organizations MTD Allen works with other
unemployed movements who share similar goals, like MTD Cipolletti, MTD Solano, and MTD Guernica.

Noelia Lecerfs is coming from the recovered Hotel Bauen in Buenos Aires.

Hotel Bauen is a 4 star hotel in downtown Buenos Aires of 120 workers. In March of 2003, the workers took over the installations of the hotel in
order to maintain their source of work. It has been a very difficult struggle in the last year and a half. In one year they were able to quadruple the number of workers, make the hotel function, which has now become a meeting space for many social movements and at the same time a cultural center. Winning the expropriation of the hotel is expected soon. The hotel has almost been evicted many times. With the threat of evictions imminent, the workers maintain a permanent assembly. Hotel Bauen has a very impressive system of making democratic decisions which still managing to run a 24 hour hotel.

Eulalia Alicia Perez from the United Cooperative of Shoe-Makers (CUC) Ex-Adidas Factory

La CUC is one of the most important shoe and sports companies in the whole country. This factory, which was called Gatic, once made shoes for ADIDAS and made shoes and sports clothes for the National Soccer Team. At the end of 2001, a new director decided to fire all the workers at the main plant and ran off with the machines. The workers answered (with the help of family, neighbors, and students) by setting up tents outside the factory, resisting for almost a year in the street. At the end of the year, they re-opened the plant and the workers returned to work. In September of 2003, the workers again began to lose pay, and tired of the same old history, on October 17th, they decided to take over the plant. They formed the Cooperative of United Shoe-makers and on December 22 they won expropriation.

d) Elsa Montero from the Clinica Fenix (x-IMECC):

IMECC is a worker-run clinic of 54 doctors, nurses, cooks, housekeeping, and other specialists. In June of 2003 the clinic had shut down; it had been a long process, where salaries were cut over and over and eventually the owners stopped showing up. Elsa says, “they owed me over a year and a half of salary." Instead of losing their jobs and becoming part of the growing number of unemployed, workers decided to return to the machines lying vacant in the clinic and open the doors to patients. They began by going to the government to demand expropriation, but when talks failed they took the factory, defending it in shifts throughout the day and with help with other occupied factories. Today, IMEC is a shining example of workers like doctors, nurses and janitors running a democratic clinic.

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Comments

Re: Tuesday: Come Hear from Argentina's Recovered Factories and Unemployed Worker Movements!
07 Nov 2005
this is incredible. i am so impressed this event is happening.
Re: Tuesday: Come Hear from Argentina's Recovered Factories and Unemployed Worker Movements!
07 Nov 2005
is there anywhere to park there?