Rio Tinto Global Network to Kick Off Global Solidarity DaysPublished by MAC on 2004-04-15
Rio Tinto Global Network to Kick Off Global Solidarity Days
Begins With April 17 'Sticker Day'
SYDNEY NSW (AUSTRALIA) John Maitland, President of the Rio Tinto Global Network a coalition of trade unions that represents about 60 percent of the Rio Tinto workforce - has announced two weeks of SOLIDARITY actions at Rio Tinto facilities around the world to protest a pattern of anti-worker, anti-union, and anti-community behavior in many countries where Rio Tinto is located.
The SOLIDARITY DAYS will begin with a sticker day on April 17, a visit to the Rio Tinto plc shareholders meeting in London on the same day, and culminate in a number of MAY DAY activities -- including the presentation of petitions outlining grievances at Rio Tinto facilities around the world and a visit to the Rio Tinto Ltd shareholders meeting in Perth, Australia.
Contact Your CAT Team Organizers for Information!
Call to ACTION
Dear Member of the Rio Tinto Global Union Network, I'm writing to urge your participation in upcoming Global Days of Solidarity sponsored by the Rio Tinto Global Network. Stepped-up global solidarity is a necessity in the face of Rio Tinto's ongoing attacks on workers rights. Despite its many public statements to the contrary, Rio Tinto continues to defy international labor standards and national labor laws. Current examples include:
- An aggressive deunionization campaign undermining Australian unions with the use of so-called "personal contracts."
- Forcing Zimbabwe workers to strike after refusing to deliver on promised wage increases, then violating statutory disciplinary procedures at Renco Mine.
- Threatening to strip health benefits from retirees at U.S. copper mines and illegally implementing a company proposal that is unfair and unacceptable.
- A mining operation in Indonesia in which Rio Tinto holds a large stake recently admitted that its has made payments of more than US$10 million to the Indonesian military, a force notorious for human right abuses, including assaults on young girls working at Rio Tinto gold mines.
Faced with these threats to the well-being of our members around the world, we are compelled to act. We are organizing international days of action to coincide with Rio Tinto shareholders' meetings on April 17th in London, England and May 1st in Perth, Australia.
We are asking you to show your commitment to global justice for Rio Tinto workers by engaging in the following solidarity activities:
- organize a sticker day on April 17th. Rio Tinto workers around the world will display stickers that call for justice. Stickers will be available in English, Portuguese and French.
- present your locally-based Rio Tinto management with a letter/petition demanding their adherence to internationally recognized labor standards. These letters/petitions should be delivered on or around May 1st.
- demonstrate for justice at Rio Tinto on May 1st by bringing banners and signs to previously scheduled May 1st parades in your country or by organizing workplace activity where appropriate.Members of the Rio Tinto Global Network also are encouraged to send delegations to the Rio Tinto shareholders meetings to directly express their grievances to management.
The ICEM and its affiliates have waged significant and effective campaigns to force Rio Tinto to respect workers rights in the past. The time has come for a renewed outburst of international solidarity. Please join in these Global Days of Solidarity and help build our power as we demand justice from Rio Tinto.