On Thursday, the representatives of the FGTB, CSC and CGSLB Unions congratulated themselves for the estimated 120,000 participants during speeches made on the demonstrations they organized together. “The government and bosses cannot ignore this movement”, stated Marc Goblet, Secretary General of the FGTB, while signaling the presence of workers from both the public and private sectors and the cultural world. “To those surprised, I tell them to read the government agreement, which is totally asocial, unjust, and puts everything on the public sector and social security. They are taking money from the collectives to put in shareholder’s pockets”, he said.
The Secretary General of the Socialist Union has laid out four conditions for reinstating social dialogue: get rid of inflation and respect freedom to negotiate, guarantee social security, put a recovery plan in place, and, finally, offer a fair fiscal system. “If we are not heard, we will act again on the 5th of January”, he warned.
“Congratulations to the 120,000 greens, reds and blues who have come from all over the country despite intimidation by bosses”, Jan Vercamst from the CGSLB added. “This mobilization is something not seen for 30 years. There are people who have not yet arrived on the Place De Brouckère”, his French speaking colleague said from the Midi main station.
As for the CSC, the Secretary General Marie-Hélène Ska also thanked the participants and especially those who did not normally demonstrate. “Many of you want change. It was even one of the main slogans of the election campaign. But what change were they talking about? Inflation, salary freezes, the legal retirement age going up, the end of non-justified credit time that will penalize women”, she cried. “Who are they mocking? They have to be brave enough to invest in public services, in a justice capable of doing its job, in culture”.
The Christian Union says it is ready to talk and will reevaluate the situation on the 15th of December, on the day of the next national strike they have all planned together.
Jason Bennett (Source: Belga)