Our Board of Presidents, meeting at DİSK Headquarters on October 11, 2022, discusses the following issues and issues and shares its decisions with the public:
We are facing the harshest distribution crisis in the history of Turkey.
While millions of workers, laborers and low-income workers, impoverished by high inflation and “robbed by the unjust tax system”, suffer a great loss of purchasing power, the Turkish economy is “growing” for a handful of capitalists. While 99 percent of this country suffers a great loss of income, the “eyes shine” of the 1 percent who add profit to their profits and wealth to their wealth.
Policies that transfer resources from workers, laborers, poor and low-income people to capital and the rich gained momentum especially during and after the pandemic process.
The calculation is clear: According to official data, while the share of labor in GDP decreased from 37 percent to 25 percent in the last three years, the share of capital increased from 45 percent to 54 percent.
The profits and wealth of the 1 percent have grown as a large portion of the working population has been sentenced to wages around the minimum wage.
With the obstacles in front of unionization and the right to collective bargaining, and the pressures against democratic rights, millions of workers were sentenced to the minimum wage, the bread of the workers was left to the pleasure of the power and the capital, and the income distribution was deteriorated.
The tax system has become even more unfair with workers being robbed by tax brackets, with workers paying taxes at the same rate as their bosses, with indirect taxes deducted equally from rich and poor, with zeroing the taxes of their affiliate companies overnight, with tax amnesties and privileges for capital; 99 percent of the people became poor, 1 percent got richer.
The profits and fortunes of the 1 percent of the population are supported by the Unemployment Insurance Fund, which provides incentives and support of 58 billion liras to employers while 23 billion liras unemployment benefit has been given to the unemployed in the last 3 years, that only 13 percent of the registered unemployed can receive unemployment benefits, and that even in the pandemic, funds are poured to employers rather than the unemployed. grew up.
The profits and wealth of the 1% have grown with inventions such as Currency Protected Deposits, which allow resources taken from the poor to make the rich even richer.
In summary, the profits and wealth of the 1% of people grew with policy choices that impoverished the 99 percent.
We worked, we produced, but aside from getting our share of growth, we lost income.
Turkey is entering the general election process in the shadow of such a severe distribution crisis. It is inevitable that the policy choices that take from 99 percent and give it to 1 percent will have a counterpart in the general elections. It is the duty of DİSK as a working class organization to organize the conscious response of the working class against these conscious choices that increase injustice in distribution more than ever before.
Turkey is experiencing a distribution crisis on the one hand and a democracy crisis on the other. It is engraved in the organized consciousness of DİSK that the struggle for bread and the struggle for democracy should be carried out together. Democracy is the bread of the worker. Where there is no democracy, the working class sees how difficult it is to unionize, strike, shout our demands in the squares, and even seek rights in the courts. For this reason, the general election process should be considered as an important area of the working class’s struggle for democracy.
Even the last vestiges of democracy in the country are under threat. Finally, with the “censorship law” adopted in the Grand National Assembly of Turkey, even talking about real inflation figures is put into the “crime” category. It is not possible to change the reality that the working class and our low-income people live and witness every day, by showing low inflation, ignoring unemployment, and putting even the talk of living difficulties in the category of “crime”. The struggle for truth, which is understood to gain even more importance in the election process, will be an integral part of the democracy struggle of the working class.
In conditions where right, law, truth and democracy are under threat, in general elections that will be a fateful moment for our country, only which President will rule our country and which party or parties will come to power will not be decided. In this fateful moment, which coincides with the centennial of the Republic, the question of “what kind of a Republic” will find an answer.
The Republic, which has been emptied step by step by excluding workers, producers, the working class and our low-income people, who are a large part of the “republic” during the process of neoliberal transformation approaching half a century, needs to be rebuilt. It is imperative that large segments of society, especially the working class, have a say and a decision on what to produce, how to produce and how to divide it. The exit from the dark tunnel that shook the foundations of the republic depends on the end of the capital policies based on the exclusion of the majority of the society (the republic). A democratic republic in a largely proletarian society can be carried into the future as a Turkey of Labor, that is, as an egalitarian-popular-public-libertarian-social republic.
While we are in a historical period for our labor, bread, democracy and our country, our Confederation will be aware of its responsibilities from its Chairman to its members, from our unions to regional representatives, and will raise the struggle for Labor’s Turkey arm in arm, shoulder to shoulder, in unity and solidarity.
Based on these findings, the DİSK Board of Presidents reached a consensus on the following issues for the upcoming period:
As we enter the election process and the centennial of the Republic, speeding up the works that express the conditions and demands of the working class, what kind of a Republic they want, and expanding the struggle for Labor’s Turkey in this direction,
Developing the struggle process that we continue with the slogan “Justice in income-justice in taxes” against the biggest distribution crisis in the history of the country, with more widespread, more effective and stronger actions,
Abolishing the legal/de facto thresholds in front of the freedom of association and collective bargaining, which are indispensable for building democracy, growing our bread and making the income distribution fair, around the idea of ”There can be no democracy without the working class organized”, democratization of trade union legislation and the assurance of the use of rights, especially the right to strike. highlighting the struggle to bring
In a process where we witness the increasing tendency of the working class to DISK, disseminating and developing our ongoing organizational efforts at the central, regional and sectoral level so that millions of our unorganized class brethren are unionized and meet with DISK despite all kinds of obstacles, deception and pressure,
Ensuring the continuity of these activities, based on the determination that the continuing education activities at the confederation level strengthen the unity and solidarity of the working class and reinforce the organization by bringing together workers from different business lines, regions and cities,
Continuing the meetings of the Regional Board of Representatives convened in Thrace, Istanbul, Kocaeli, Eskişehir and South Marmara respectively in the past period, with meetings in other regions,
Convening our Council of Women’s Representatives on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, 25 November, and disseminating our struggle for the ratification of the ILO Convention on the Prevention of Violence and Harassment in Turkey.
This post is also available in: English