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RIGA - Several hundred trade union representatives demonstrated outside the Cabinet of Ministers’ building in center Riga on June 19, reports LETA. The Free Trade Union Confederation of Latvia held a rally at the Cabinet building “in support of social justice and against poverty” to emphasize the importance of respectable living and working conditions in Latvia.
Demonstrators arrived from various regions of Latvia, and represented various local trade unions, including doctors and education workers, as well as from the troubled metallurgical company Liepajas metalurgs. The rally participants held up posters with various slogans on them urging the government to ensure better conditions for the workforce, increase pensions, as well as for the state to take better care of the country’s medical personnel, as people will not remain healthy all their lives, they said.
The rally was also addressed by European Trade Union Confederation Deputy Secretary General Patrick Itschert, who said that the price of austerity has been too high, and urged the government to take a look at the consequences of the country’s austerity - low wages, poverty and unemployment.
During the rally, the Free Trade Union Confederation of Latvia was to demand a just and commensurate tax policy, support for new jobs, youth employment guarantees, respect towards collective agreements and social dialogue, as well as safe labor conditions.
The Free Trade Union Confederation of Latvia has also launched a signature drive against changes to the Labor Law.