Today, September 2 is a historical day in the struggle for justice against the Samsung conglomerate. Samsung is one of the representative companies in Korea which has been ruled by owner Lee Kun-hee and his family. They have obstructed forming trade unions by making phantom unions to keep their policy of ‘No Unions’. In Korea, multiple trade unions have been allowed since July 2011. Thus Samsung has been taking disciplinary actions or dismissing workers who are trying to organize trade unions.
Meanwhile as it has no trade union, workers in Samsung are under terrible working conditions. At the beginning of Jan in 2011, 26 years old Kim Ju Hyun who was working at Samsung Electronics took his own life by plunging from the 13th story of dormitory owing to 14 hours of long hours labor, being exposed to chemicals, job stress and depression; and 24 years old Park Ki Sook jumped to death from the 18thstory. Until now more than 50 workers have been killed in occupational diseases and more than 100 workers are suffering from those disorders. However, so far Samsung has denied all kinds of responsibilities on them.
All the while, Samsung has kept watching, threatening and dismissing workers who are trying to form trade unions. They even committed tapping cellphones and kidnapping workers. Despite being under these tough circumstances, Samsung Trade Union has been organized. All comrades, your solidarities are strongly needed!
Samsung hired service employees by giving a monthly salary of 280 US dollars, whos only job is to give notice of assembly (first, pre-emptively, before other groups can) to keep workers and citizens from organizing any rally in front of its head office building. Under Korean demonstration law, nobody can hold a rally at the same place if anybody else gives notice first. But this time, narrowly our group managed to give notice of the assembly earlier than the company. Therefore we finally can make a rally censuring Samsung for their repression of trade unions and urging to the company to recognize occupational diseases in front of Samsung head office building on September 2.
We are asking you, all of Asian comrades to solidarize for this rally. Your solidarity would be a great help to workers who are painfully battling against Samsung.
Message from Korea House of International Solidarity, member of South Korean social coalition for justice from Samsung