Monday, October 24, 2011

PALEA holds “Run for Justice Against Corporate Greed”

Press Release
October 24, 2011

Members of the Philippine Airlines Employees’ Association (PALEA) and Partido ng Manggagawa (PM) held a “Run for Justice Against Corporate Greed” this morning as part of the groups’ advocacy for regular jobs. “The Run for Justice is also inspired by the movement against corporate greed and capitalist globalization that is sweeping the world,” said Gerry Rivera, PALEA president and PM vice chair.

The groups’ jog for a cause started at Coastal Mall, Pasay City, proceeded along MIA road and ended at the PALEA protest camp out the In-Flight Center (IFC) of Philippine Airlines (PAL). PALEA’s occupation of the perimeter of the IFC has been questioned by PAL but the union has vowed to defend its campout.

Last October 19, a court sheriff accompanied by unidentified men who have been called by PALEA as “hired goons of PAL” attempted to disperse the campout. The resistance of more than a thousand PALEA members forced them to retreat. “Just like PAL, corporate interests have tried to suppress the global protests and disperse the occupations. But the rising of the 99% cannot be stopped by the 1%,” Rivera added.

“Malacanang is just whistling in the dark when it dismisses the threat of widespread protests in the Philippine similar to Occupy Wall Street. The government’s trust in the conditional cash transfer as a means of containing social unrest is misplaced. Only structural reforms addressing the roots causes of poverty can stop the explosion of the social volcano. Already Occupy Wall Street has inspired the joining of forces of PALEA and North Triangle residents who are both fighting corporate interests,” Rivera explained.

A big protest on November 30 is being planned by a convergence of labor, urban poor and farmers groups. Bishop Broderick Pabillo, Manila Auxiliary Bishop and head of the National Secretariat for Social Action of the CBCP, is convening the meetings of the different sectoral groups.

Bishop Pabillo has proposed the formation of a social reform network in view of the rising trend of social discontent among workers, peasants and urban poor. The social reform network plans to engage government in a dialogue to tackle the problems of poverty, unemployment, contractualization, housing, agrarian reform and others.

After All Saints Day, PALEA will hold a “Lakbay-Hustisya” or a long march around Metro Manila in order to bring its campaign against contractualization to the grassroots level. The “Lakbay-Hustisya” will pass by parishes and communities in Manila, Quezon City, Makati, Paranaque and Pasay as part of PALEA’s aim to garner the support of ordinary Filipinos in the fight for regular jobs.

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