The Second Brutal Attack by the Police against the Striking Irregular Workers at E-Land and New Core.

-There will be no more warnings. The police brutal acts will be avenged.

  In the early morning on July 31, the police again violated the workers' right to strike. We now characterize the Roh Moo-hyun government, which has consistently resorted to force against the workers, as a government of violence. And we will make E-Land, the company that has mobilized thugs and threatened violence against the striking workers, regret the actions they have taken today under the protection of the government.

  After police forces dispersed striking workers on the 20th of last month, the government hasn't acted to bring the employers to the negotiating table. Rather they have sought to crush the calls of the workers. They have arrested a member of the trade union's negotiating committee, and have blocked the right of the workers to strike by applying for a provisional disposition regarding obstruction of business. Recently it has even provisionally seized the bank accounts of members and mobilized thugs to threaten force. These examples are only the most recent examples that confirm where the responsibility for the current crisis lies. As the second sit-in strike has shown violence will not resolve this stand-off.

  The management philosophy of E-Land, which promised 100% employment succession and guarantee of trade union activities when it acquired Carrefour's stores, is said to be 'work over money, and people over work.' This 'focus on people' in reality has translated into 10 hour days for 850 dollars in monthly wages, mass layoffs and outsourcing in order to evade direct employment and correction of discrimination, reduction in contracted workers, casualization of regular workers, and contracts of 3, 6, 9, and sometimes even 0 months. Their actions were a retail store of labor oppression under the name of cost-cutting. Workers worked on holidays and 24 hour shifts. The rest area for workers was turned into a praying room for religions activities aimed at raising sales. On top of it all, the collective bargaining agreement was violated by the management before the response from the workers. This is the essence of E-Land.

  Faced with such a situation, workers have for the first time joined a union and organized a sit-in strike. These women workers have taken their cause directly to the public, and many citizens have shed tears at their plight. But the government has crushed the actions by these workers with police shields, solely reiterating the claim that the actions were illegal. If the law and government force is used to trample on the majority of workers, then they cannot expect to be respected. E-Lands CEO, the head of a company which has engaged in unjust labor practices for over 10 years and now has laid off hundreds of female workers while utilizing negotiations as a tactical tool for repression, needs to be arrested.  

  The catastrophe that the government has brought on by protecting abusive companies and deceiving the public with the bill to protect irregular workers will only further the repression of irregular workers by employers. It can be expected that irregular workers will not stand by while this happens, and more struggles will occur. The country will have to bear the costs of social conflict, and responsibility lies solely with the employers and the government. They will have to pay a price.

On July 31, KCTU immediately had a meeting of representatives from the industrial unions and has decided that on the 21st of this month, a National Congress will be held that has only one item for discussion: resolving the New Core, E-Land issue. The Congress will resolve to extend the struggle to all levels of the organization. The regional offices will continue to organize activities to minimize sales at E-Land stores, and there will be concentrated efforts for '0 sales' on the 5th and 11th. On the 18th, there will be a workers' rally across the country with more than 50,000 workers participating. The only solution is an agreement that incorporates the demands of the workers at E-Land. If the government and E-Land want a dialogue, they must first apologize for the acts that have been committed so far.
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