Mašina English Blog

Meeting the Left: Arnaldo Otegi

Arnaldo Otegi is the general coordinator of the Basque EH Bildu, which unites different sectors and parties of the left. The fourth guest of the series of talks “Meeting the Left” spoke about the revolutionary program minimum, the need for a different Europe and the need to cooperate more on the left.

Meeting the Left: Heinz Bierbaum

In an interview within the “Meeting the Left” series Heinz Bierbaum, President of the European Left Party (EL), talked about the crisis of the socio-economic system and a strategic document newly adopted by his party.

Meeting the Left: Katja Kipping

The second guest in transform!’s series “Meeting the Left” was Katja Kipping, Co-Chairperson of the party Die LINKE. The conversation largely focussed on European politics.

Meeting the Left: Catarina Martins

Catarina Martins, Coordinator for the Left Bloc (Bloco de Esquerda) from Portugal, advocates forming of a European recovery fond weighing 1.5 billion €. The fund should be financed directly by the European Central Bank, stated Martins in an interview which was a part of the “Meeting the left” series.

Too little too late: The high cost of European indolence

It was not until mid-March that EU member states reached a halfway decent agreement on action against COVID-19. The rich states of the north express a lack of interest in solidarity policies, but that’s precisely what could blow up in their faces.

When you find yourself in an unsustainable position out of the blue: the appeal of workers in culture to the authorities

Many organizations and arts associations belonging to the cultural sector have recently appealed to the Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Serbia, the Belgrade City Secretariat of Culture and other relevant institutions, as well as to the expert community, requesting urgent adoption of concrete measures of support for artists, cultural workers and the self-employed sector in culture. They face economic hardship caused by the state of emergency in Serbia, which was declared due to the corona virus pandemic.

Glovo deliverers in Belgrade demand higher earnings

Aware that their services are needed during the outbreak of coronavirus, the Glovo App delivery workers keep driving. They ask no dedication award from the company, but demand to be fairly paid and that their wages return to their January levels – to that end they have started organizing.

Boosting the anti-migrant right

Although the number of migrants in Serbia has only slightly increased since the beginning of the year, and the number of crimes perpetrated by migrants represents merely 0.06% of the total number of crimes committed, social networks are flooded with fake news, which raise panic over a fabricated issue.

Yielding to capital: Serbian Ministry of labour is covering for the employers whose workers died in 2019

In the year 2019, declared by the Government of Serbia to be the year of occupational safety and health, more employees died than in 2018, when as many as 53 workers lost their lives. Concurrently, the Ministry of Labour for the first time refused to provide the author of this piece with information concerning the employers who hired the passed away workers, as well as the information regarding the possible violations of labour regulations, although withholding such information contradicts the law on Access to Information of Public Importance, the former Commissioner Rodoljub Šabić pointed out for Mašina.

The Industry of Leaving

Every year, thousands of medical workers leave Serbia and the surrounding Balkan countries for Germany, where hospital and retirement homes are more than willing to dish out hefty sums to intermediaries who bring in fresh employee material. It is a play on people looking for a better life, with plenty of money involved. But who are the key players?

Serbian Agency Employment Law: Will it help workers or put them in a disadvantage?

Domestic legislation has for the first time regulated the position of employees engaged through agencies, although such employment has existed for years. In what way and how much will the new law help agency workers? We discussed this with Jugoslav Ristić, president of the Confederation of Autonomous Trade Unions in Kragujevac and Mario Reljanović, an expert in labour law.

Laura Palmer from Small-Town Romania

At the end of July this year, 15-year-old Alexandra was killed in Caracal, southern Romania. The fact that the police, whom she had called three times, took nineteen hours to locate the call and arrive at the scene of the killing, caused shock and indignation across Romania, but also pointed to the state apparatuses’ mechanisms of subordination, and the catastrophic effect of capitalism on the outskirts of Europe.

Post of Serbia’s workers demand fairer wage distribution

A large number of Post of Serbia workers continue the work stoppage they started two days ago. The reason for dissatisfaction are low salaries and the management’s wage increase proposal, which many workers deem unfair. After the main postal center in Zemun was blocked on Monday night, a series of stoppages in postal units in many cities across Serbia followed. Delivery workers and drivers are most likely to suspend work, while counter clerks joined at different locations.

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