Ukraine: for concrete solidarity, let's finance the Workers' Christmas of the Kryvyi Rih trade union
Our comrades from the Kryvyi Rih trade union are going to distribute gifts for the children of the workers in the mines, steelworks, enterprises and districts of the city. Let's help them!
The war that Putin's regime is waging in Ukraine has dramatic consequences; even more so with the onset of winter, as Russian missile strikes are causing numerous power cuts. The Ukrainian population is resisting, the trade unionists are particularly active: many of them have been engaged∙ in territorial defence, they are also continuing the struggle against the anti-social measures of the Ukrainian government and against the bosses who are taking advantage of the war to attack the rights of workers.
The member organisations of the International Trade Union Solidarity and Struggle Network have already organised trade union convoys to Ukraine, brought in materials to meet the demands of our trade union comrades on the ground, and met and discussed with those who have been suffering from the war since late February. We are in regular contact with activists who are working for social emancipation in these difficult circumstances. On December 17, we were able to talk to trade union leaders in Kryvyi Rih, in the Dnipropetrovsk region, members of the Confederation of Free Trade Unions of Ukraine (KVPU).
The day before, missiles had fallen on the city's working-class district, killing people, including children. The strikes have been daily for several days. There is a great fear with winter coming, as many houses have no heating. The strikes also threaten schools and kindergartens. The missiles are also hitting workplaces, companies and construction sites. This means victims. The bosses take the situation into account, of course, but they are still bosses and their priority is production and productivity; the union must constantly intervene to ensure that rights are respected, and this is more difficult since the latest anti-social laws; there are, for example, miners, electricity cuts, which means staying underground sometimes for 24 hours longer than planned.
The union is going to organise a "workers' Christmas". The aim is to maintain and strengthen popular cohesion, which is already very strong in the face of Russian military aggression. With this workers' Christmas, the union shows once again that workers organise themselves directly, without relying on institutions or other groups whose interests are not our own. In the Ukrainian context, the trade unionists of Kryvyi Rih also want to reappropriate this period of "Christmas" as a moment of secular, progressive and emancipatory conviviality. Just like 8 March, the international day of women's struggle that many still want to caricature as a "women's day" with reactionary contours.
The International Trade Union Solidarity and Struggle Network calls on you to participate in the donation campaign we have just launched. With these donations and the support of the member unions of the International Trade Union Solidarity and Struggle Network, we will finance a new trade union convoy to Ukraine. But we propose to set aside part of the money now for the Workers' Christmas in Kryvyi Rih. Of course we will inform about the use of these donations.