Miners Unions Open Letter to President of Ukraine

The Ukrainian Miners are engaged in a dispute for the survival of their industry.  As part of their ongoing campaign to stop pit closures the Independent Trade Union of Miners (NGPU) has issued an open letter.  

 Petro Poroshenko

President of Ukraine 

Arsenyi Yatseniuk

Prime Minister of Ukraine 

Volodynyr Groisman

Head of Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine 

CC:

Guy Rider

ILO Director-General

Sharan Barrow

ITUC General Secretary

Ban Ki-moon

UN Secretary-General

Donald Tusk

President of European Council

 

OPEN LETTER

The Independent Trade Union of Miners of Ukraine (NPGU), not for the first time, draws attention to the critical situation in the entire fuel-energy sector of Ukraine. This is a problem of an ineffective work, non-operation of coal mines, non-payments, failure to supply coal to warehouses of heating plants and, as a consequence, failure in getting prepared to autumn-winter 2015-2016. All this resulted in salaries’ debts and violations of all principles of social dialog.

The miners, reacting to such a situation, carried out the 3rd Congress of Miners on 21-22 April 2015 to which they invited high officials. However, you, as well as your services, ignored this event.

The miners have become hostages of the circumstances as the situation in the sector only takes a turn for the worse. Lately coal miners have carried out a number of spontaneous protests, just to mention Lviv and Volyn oblasts.

Instead of resolving the situation constructively in the fuel-energy sector, the government, using the enforcement structures, first of all, – Security Services of Ukraine, as well as controlled mass media – manipulate, persecute and discredit both the miners and trade union activists.

Under the circumstances of manipulation and falsehood, the situation cannot be resolved. Let’s remind that the best representatives of labour movement are members of the independent trade unions, who strive for changing the country for the best and who clearly stand up for civil society and democratic governance development in Ukraine, being inspired by the best European standards.

More than 3 500 NPGU members take part in the ATO within the Ukrainian Armed Forces and National Guard units. It is worthwhile mentioning our brothers:  Oleksandr Gurov, who was captured by separatists and tortured; Oleksandr Vovk, who was severely tortured by DNR militants; Ivan Reznichenko, who was brutally killed in his native Solidar-town, where he was a Deputy of town council…

We call upon the Government not to neglect elementary aspirations of the working people to have right to work and to get paid for their work in order to be able to feed their families. We also call upon not to appoint incompetent and unprofessional people from your political parties and family businesses to high management positions.

If we succeed in making joint efforts in order to see and feel the needs of each citizen of the country, Ukraine, then, will have an European and civilized face.

We are hopeful for your tolerance and responsibility in front of the Ukrainian society.

Sincerely,

Mikhailo Volynets

Head of the Independent Trade Unions of Miners of Ukraine

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