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Teachers Escalate Strike in Honduras

March 28, 2011

Honduran teachers unions escalated their 21 day strike today by occupying “dozens of education centers around the country.” The new tactic came in response to the death of one of their members during Friday’s protests, as well as an announcement by post-coup President Porfirio Lobo Sosa declaring the strike illegal and proclaiming that all teachers who fail to report to school today will be replaced and suspended for up to a year. According to Latinnews, Lobo also threatened to dismantle the main teachers union, the Federación de Organizaciones Magisteriales de Honduras (FOMH).

Teachers Protest in Tegucigalpa.

Photo: Telesur

The 60,000 teachers, along with 14,000 healthcare workers, and supporters from the Frente Nacional de Resistencia Popular (FNRP), a popular political group who denies the legitimacy of the Lobo government, argue that a new law in the Honduran legislature is an attempt to privatize education and destroy teachers’ pensions. They are also demanding six months back pay for 6,000 of their members.

The protests mirror conflicts across the world between cost-cutting governments and their affected populations. It will be interesting to see how things turn out in Honduras; 100,000 protesters in Wisconsin were unable to save the state’s public sector unions, and it looks like 500,000 marchers in London might not be able to stave off the British government’s cuts to social services. The unions have called a general strike for Wednesday. If the strike succeeds by garnering widespread participation in Honduras, it could be a much-needed jolt to the spirits of the international labor movement, as well as the anti-government resistance movement nominally led by ousted President Manuel Zelaya.

Written by COHA Research Associate Robert Cavooris

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One Comment leave one →
  1. Rirua Kandjii permalink
    June 3, 2011 9:04 am

    I found the highlights very interesting and useful for those interested in developments in the Americas. I support the idea and I have subscribed to receive the blog.

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