682 Turkish union member teachers reassigned against their wishes: Eğitim-Sen
Gülseven Özkan – ANKARATurkey’s Union of Education Workers (Eğitim-Sen) has announced that 682 of its member teachers in the southeastern provinces of Şanlıurfa, Diyarbakır, and Gaziantep have been assigned to different schools against their wishes, just a few days before schools are reopened for the new academic year.
One of the reasons cited for these compulsory reassignments is reported to be “participation in marches not in line with the Turkish Republic’s fight against terrorism, in which slogans of ‘murderer state’ were shouted.”
The Gaziantep and Diyarbakır provincial directorates of the Education Ministry stated that the “compulsory reassignment” decision was undertaken for the 682 people as a result of investigations launched against them.
The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has taken the issue to parliament’s agenda, submitting a parliamentary question to Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım.
In a statement released on Aug. 28, Eğitim-Sen vowed to “continue struggling.”
“For the end of every kind of oppression and compulsory assignment, and for the education right of our students, it should be known that we will continue our struggle,” it stated.
Eğitim-Sen Diyarbakır branch head Abbas Şahin said in a press meeting on Aug. 29 that its members had been reassigned to various Central Anatolian provinces, and the union feared the teachers may face attacks in their reassigned areas.
He said the reassigned 264 union member teachers in Diyarbakır had been temporarily laid off with a previous state of emergency decree, but after investigations they were reinstated to their positions on condition that they accept reassignment to another school in another province.