The Maritime Union of Australia will rally in Sydney today in support of the 1,000 Indonesian truck drivers who have been on indefinite strike since November 1.
These workers had no other choice but to take direct action, as they were placed in poor and unsafe conditions by their employer - the fuel refining and distribution corporation Pertamina Patra Niaga (PPN).
Despite the fact that the vast majority of these workers provided over ten years of loyal service to the company, they have been denied job security through casualisation and short-term contracts and forced to work 12 hour days with no overtime.
To make matters worse, there have been a number of work-related fatalities.
MUA National Secretary and International Transport Workers’ Federation President Paddy Crumlin said the workers are taking strike action with the support of their union, the Federasi Buruh Transportasi dan Palubahan Indonesia (FBTPI).
“The striking workers and the FBTPI have the full support of the International Transport Workers’ Federation,” Mr Crumlin said.
“I have urged company management to meet with the workers and their union to negotiate in a constructive way to resolve this dispute."
“I encourage the Indonesian government to take all possible steps to ensure that these workers’ demands are met, so they can return to work.”
Photo: Paul McAleer addresses the rally
The President of the FBTPI, Ilhamsyah, has informed the ITF that the workers have a number of demands:
all drivers at the PPN Plumpang depot are made permanent;
back-pay is given for overtime from 2011 until September 2016;
penalty rates are paid for holiday work;
the gas and fuel workers’ allowance is provided;
work hours are limited to 7 hours per day or 40 hours per week;
PPN stops all intimidation towards workers; and
PPN reinstates workers who were dismissed unilaterally.
Please note: Information and images of the action will be tweeted at #FBTPIsolidarity