Striking actionsDespite resistance from its members, leaders of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions have declared a full strike. This is a display of arrogance and self-righteousness.
The illegal behavior of the umbrella union began before the strike was even declared. Hyundai Motor union’s ballot on the proposed strike was a sham.
The confederation’s proposal was obviously voted down, as 51.5 percent of its union members rejected the proposal.
However, the confederation and Hyundai Motor union said 55.9 percent of members who participated in the ballot voted for the strike and that the proposal was approved.
Not only labor laws but also Hyundai union’s covenant forbid industrial action unless a majority of union members agree.
The union has violated labor movement procedures. If the confederation proceeds, no one will consider the strike justified.
This unreasonable push for a strike is a problem and the union’s justifications are based on prejudices and misjudgments.
Lee Seok-haeng, the confederation’s chairman, said in an interview that opposing imports of American beef and privatization of public corporations are an extension of the labor movement.
They argue that if imports resume, irregular workers will eat more American beef, and if public companies are privatized, utility costs will rise by three to four times.
But their argument on rising utility costs is groundless.
One example is they used the cost of spring water in everyday life to calculate how much utility costs would rise.
After the new administration came to power, the confederation unveiled its true colors.
“We will stop electricity and trains to ruin international trust in the country,” it said. “We will strike till snow falls,” it said, threatening the government.
Clearly, it wants to wreck the country. Who is this for? Is it for workers or is it because of political incitement?
The crisis for the confederation has already begun. Membership in the Korean Teachers and Educational Workers’ Union, which is under the umbrella of the confederation, continues to decline.
Fifteen unions under the federation of chemical and textile unions have decided to leave the confederation in protest.
At this difficult time, the country has to be frugal, but the unions’ strike action runs counter to the needs of the people.