Renault’s auto production interrupted at Bursa plant
ISTANBUL - Doğan News Agency
One of the three workers who was wounded in a fight that broke out at Renault’s plant in the northwestern province of Bursa gets medical help. DHA photo
French automotive-maker Renault’s production was halted in the northwestern province of Bursa due to a walk-out staged by workers during the night shift Nov. 12, as simmering tensions led to three workers being wounded in a scuffle.
The protest was conducted by workers who believed a draft document regarding labor demands drafted by the trade union Türk Metal prior to collective bargaining, which is set to commence in the upcoming days, inadequate.
The workers, who accused the union leaders of collaborating with the employer, staged a sit-in outside the management building and called for the leaders’ resignation.
Türk Metal is a member of Türk-İş, one of the three largest trade union confederations in Turkey.
Three workers wounded
Birleşik-Metal, a rival trade union tied to the Confederation of Progressive Trade Unions (DİSK), is trying to unionize at the plant as well.
A fight broke out yesterday morning as a group of workers who reported to work for Bosch, a German industrial giant, went to the Oyak-Reanult factory to support the protesting workers.
Three workers were wounded with knives and sticks in the fight that broke out during the shift change yesterday morning at 8 a.m.
Renault is in partnership in Turkey with Oyak (Armed Forces Pension Fund). A total of 6,000 workers are employed at the Bursa plant working three shifts a day. The draft demands were very in favor of the workers, said Ruhi Biçer, a trade union leader at Türk Metal. He accused a “marginal group” of causing trouble.
Özkan Atar of the rival Birleşik Metal İş accused the Türk Metal leaders of the protests and the fight. Atar said workers at Oyak Renault work under very harsh conditions and are paid between 1,000 Turkish Liras and 2,000 liras. Workers were not asked their opinions in preparation for collective bargaining for the period 2012-2014, which naturally led to a reaction by workers, he said.