The Forum for IT Employees (FITE) Kolkata supports the call for Global May Day 2021 and arranged various activities as part of a week of action, which started on May Day.
For example FITE set up a youtube channel and published their first video introducing their organization:
They made this video documenting a recent success of FITE. A worker was reinstated after being fired – activate subtitles:
May Day statement published:
*Note from the desk of FITE Kolkata Office Bearer Team on May Day, 2021 to union members, fellow workers and fraternity*
May Day or 1st of May observed as Labour Day traces back its history to late 19th century when a movement and organized protest started against the pathetic working conditions of labours in America and Canada. The workers demanded 8 hours working day and improvement of overall working condition. This led to the brutal Haymarket affair in 1886 when a massacre happened, claiming several lives due to opposition from the government and the industrialists and the agitation that occurred on that incident. To commemorate that day as the benchmark of labour’s struggles for their rights and legitimate working conditions, May Day is celebrated all over the world as international working class solidarity day.
For trade unions, this May Day is about the protection of lives and livelihoods. It is about comprehensively conceived health security, sustainable jobs and livable wages. There has not been a time in recent history when lives and livelihoods, health and job securities have been more challenged and become more vulnerable.
As the country fights the deadly second wave of Covid, all the major trade unions of the country are jointly staging a protest on this May Day demanding free vaccination for all. The unions are also protesting against the “anti-worker, anti-farmer, anti-people” policies that have been implemented and are being implemented in recent times.
Throughout last one year, FITE Kolkata has battled against innumerable cases of retrenchments, illegal terminations, pay cuts and forced resignations. We have also extended our efforts to help the distressed people in time of Covid lockdown, aftermath of deadly cyclone Amphan etc.
This year as we are going through more tough and challenging time we are more determined and gearing up to serve our fellow employees and society better and resist any form of injustices and exploitations in work place.
On this May day, the international working class solidarity day, we are joining numerous other trade unions to demand from the Government for free universal vaccination, adequate hospital beds, adequate supply of oxygen, life-saving drugs and other medical facilities. We also demand if any form of lockdown or restrictions in movement be imposed by authorities, it must be accompanied with strict order to all employers banning retrenchments and wage cuts.
In a situation when government has majorly failed to ensure the protection of lives of citizens, we are witnessing how people’s solidarity and networks are helping each other to save lives. In this trying times apart from our routine union works, helping employees with all our means against any form of work place injustices, exploitations, illegal terminations; we are also trying to use our networks to fullest to help the people in need and fight the pandemic.