The labor strikes continue in Aruba, but ultimately who is being hurt by the protests? A strike is generally not supposed to hurt the very people that it is intended to help. A protest for higher wages destroying the very economy where the wages are derived. What a concept. Does anyone is Aruba not think that is a tourist was inconvenienced in any manner during their vacation that they will have anything good to say? Arubans are obviously unfamiliar with the concept that when an individual goes to a restaurant and has a good meal they tell a friend, when they have a bad meal, they tell 10.
A number of teachers indicated that they want to resume the classes for the students that need to take exams. Vice-chair of Simar Anna Tromp said that she can understand that. Several other teachers also indicated that they want to go back and prepare their students for their First Holy Communion.
Hear no Evil, See no Evil and Speak no Evil Scared Monkeys in Houston, TX at the Houston Travel Show standing with the girl and “Justice for Natalee”
One thing is for certain with the on going protests, strikes and boycotts taking place in Aruba … No one can say that individuals who protest for “Justice for Natalee” do not have a right to do so and that they behave themselves better than those striking in Aruba. The right to peacefully demonstrate is one of the corner stones of American Democracy.
Unions talk with governor (Amigoe: 4/21/2008)
The entrance of the Government Building was seriously damaged by fireworks this weekend.
ORANJESTAD – The demonstrating union members that gathered at DOW at the L.G. Smith Boulevard this morning, have blocked the entrance of the container harbour again. The blockade was lifted when the lawyer of Aruba Ports Authority gave the demonstrators a letter, pointing out the illegality of the blockade. The unions now hope that governor Fredis Refunjol will mediate in the long-term labour dispute. The governor has met with the unions this afternoon.
After lifting the blockade, the demonstrators gathered at DOW again to consider further actions. One of the actions would be blocking the turbo-roundabout on the Boulevard near Belgiestraat. This didn’t take place when this paper went to press this morning. Traffic was normal.
There was a meeting in the Simar building on Sunday afternoon and the demonstrators decided to continue with the actions, but with a smaller number of members, compared to last week. A number of teachers indicated that they want to resume the classes for the students that need to take exams. Vice-chair of Simar Anna Tromp said that she can understand that. Several other teachers also indicated that they want to go back and prepare their students for their First Holy Communion. All the teachers of Colegio Arubano were back in school today teaching.
After Friday’s negotiations between the government and the unions failed, the unions now hope that the governor can motivate the government to negotiate seriously with the demonstrators. The governor is back on the island namely. There was a meeting planned between the governor and the unions for this afternoon. That meeting cannot be considered an attempt of the governor to mediate, because that does not harmonize with this ‘pure domestic concern’, emphasizes the Cabinet of the Governor.
“The strikes are no kingdom affairs and the governor cannot function as mediator”, said director Harold Boersen. He indicated that the governor is talking to everybody and behind the scenes is doing his best to help end this conflict. “That suits his function. As far as national government affairs, the governor is part of the government, but definitely not the ‘boss’ of the government.” This is the second time that the governor is talking with the parties behind the scenes to bring about a dialogue.
The unions deliberated intensively yesterday and today about coming to mutual conditions. The unions realize that the actions form a dilemma between their members’ responsibilities towards the students and the ‘legal fight for indexation’, says Tromp. The unions are also talking about deliberating with the school boards and make sure that the climate between the teaching personnel among each other, as well as between the teachers and the school board is good when the members go back to work. The unions are preparing this deliberation with the school boards.
Tromp says that the readiness to take actions is still big but that the members are assuming their responsibilities. The only action that can be taken with less demonstrators is the blockage of roads, and since there were not that many demonstrators available today, a blockage action spoke for itself. Tromp does not rule out that the actions will be hardened. She says that part of the members are radicalizing, because it has already been taken so long before there is a result. They do not want hear of any deviation from the war of attrition that the government seems to be waging with us.
Several destructions were noticed at the Government Building this past weekend. The entrance to the council minister hall was damaged by fireworks; the building was bombarded with bottles and rotten fruit; and the transformer kiosk behind the building was damaged. Party in office MERP said that these destructions were done by demonstrating civil servants. The party spokesperson indicated further that the actions are harming the economy of Aruba. The MEP condemns especially the blockades and the party says that the leaders of the opposition parties have incited the demonstrators to do this.
Tromp says that there is proof that the destructions were done by the union members. It’s true that the members are angry and disappointed. But it can also have been the result of weekend-vandalism due to excessive alcohol use. We can also not rule out that the destructions were done by rioters that have nothing to do with the actions, but have used this intolerable method to show that they back our viewpoint, says Tromp.