We, the Action Committee of WISAG Ground Workers at Frankfurt Airport, stand in solidarity with the workers at Volvo Trucks in Dublin, Virginia, USA. You have overwhelmingly rejected a contract for the second time and have resumed the strike you have been conducting since April 17 against wage theft and murderous working hours. The United Auto Workers (UAW) union wanted to force a contract on you that would have fixed these terrible conditions for six years. But the Volvo workers’ independent rank-and-file committee made the concrete facts known and enabled you to make your own judgement and courageously vote “no.”
We WISAG ground workers are also fighting against this double oppression—on the one hand, of the capitalist employers who have used the pandemic to enrich themselves even more unrestrainedly at our expense, and, on the other hand, of trade union officials who see themselves as the “co-managers” of the companies.
At WISAG, we are fighting against the illegitimate dismissal of 260 workers who had worked at the airport for decades before they were kicked out and replaced by over-exploited, low-wage workers. We, too, stood up to the union. The service union Verdi at the airport did not lift a finger in our defence, although we had paid membership dues for decades. We resigned and laid a black funeral wreath in front of the Verdi headquarters in Frankfurt.
Since then, more and more workers from other companies at the airport have joined our rank-and-file committee. They are not prepared to give up their jobs, their incomes and the future of their families without a fight, and they have the same experiences with Verdi as we have. For decades, we have seen conditions at the airport deteriorate through deregulation and privatisation, with a narrow layer enriching itself at our expense.
We learned about your struggle through the World Socialist Web Site, while the bourgeois media systematically silenced it. In the same way, they kept quiet about our demonstrations and our eight-day hunger strike in February/March. In the WSWS reports, your colleagues speak strongly in favour of international solidarity, and we totally agree with you! At the beginning of our labour struggle, we decided on the slogan: “Today it’s us—tomorrow it’s you.” By this, we mean not only that more and more workers are affected by the attacks on jobs and wages, but also that more and more workers will join our struggle.
In this sense, we wish you the necessary strength and the solidarity of ever-wider layers of the working class, so that you can lead your struggle to success!
With solidarity greetings,
HB for the WISAG Action Committee