(Received via email)
PRONOUNCEMENTS BY THE CUTC ON A FIRST OF MAY FOR UNITY, LIBERTY AND SOVEREIGNTY
Havana, April 24, 2007- The members of the extended Executive Committee of the Unitary Council of Cuban Workers (CUTC), the Cuban Institute of Independent Trade Union Studies (ISECI), the Bureau of Independent Legal Labor Assessment (BAJIL), the Emilio Máspero Independent Library, and affiliated independent provincial and municipal delegations, in exercise of our moral and civil rights and in light of the crisis that faces the nation, reaffirm our resolved position as independent trade unionists displayed in the documents we have released, in which we affirm our historic choice for free trade unionism and democracy, and at the same time ratify our basic and ethical principles and values, summarized in the Organic Letter, the Statutes, the Code of Ethics, the Declaration of Principles, and the document entitled “Here We Are” among others, whose fundamentals are based on the working objectives and goals of the Latin American Workers’ Center (CLAT) and the Worldwide Trade Union Confederation.
WE PROCLAIM AND DEMAND:
* To be conscious of the events of our homeland. That those internationally in solidarity with our cause will take firm and sure steps to help ensure that true democracy is reborn in our nation.
* The immediate liberation of our Secretary General, Mr. Pedro Pablo Álvarez Ramos, which was approved by a non-legal initiative of the Spanish Congress, due to the measures taken by MP Carlos Salvador, as a result of the actions that have been realized since 2003 by various civic, trade union and non-governmental organizations, among others in the international solidarity community.
* The liberation of our compatriots imprisoned on March 18th and 19th, 2003, as well as the other prisoners of conscience who were arrested prior to this date.
* To prepare our nation’s workers to face changes in Labor Human Rights.
* To come together in unity, on the basis of respect for individualism, as long they correspond to the CUTC.
* To support, in our role as trade unionists, the political and civil movements that struggle for freedom.
* To adopt the proclamations of the Latin American Workers’ Center (CLAT), the International Organization of Labor (OIT), Worldwide Trade Union Confederation, and other international organizations whose proclamations favor and benefit the working class.
* The dignity of labor, as the instrument that displays man’s superiority over the forces of nature and is the fundamental source of solidarity among men, for generating the cultural patrimony of humanity, whose possession and production is collective.
* Unity in the working class to help balance a neo-liberal and globalized world.
* Respect for the honorable struggle of workers defending an independently organized labor movement that orients its action in favor of the individual and collective freedom of workers, within the context of holistic personal fulfillment, regardless of one’s place in society.
* The defense of politically unaffiliated free trade unionism.
* Action by the workers’ movements that has a national dimension but that addresses current issues of globalization and trasnationalism. Action that adheres to the complexity required to respond to the problems and defend the interests and rights of workers.
* To take into account the philosophical and ethical dimension of human principles and values, in which personal development combines with technical and scientific training.
* A working class inspired by a healthy democracy, where the labor laws embody the values that they are truly entitled to.
* The restoration of the rights and entitlements of the Cuban working class.
* Achieve autonomy, unity, democracy, and freedom in the exercise of trade unionism and the creation of independent labor organizations.
* The fulfillment of Agreements 87/1948 (regarding trade union freedom and the protection of the right to unionize), 98/1949 (regarding the right to unionize and collective bargaining), and other accords to which Cuba is signatory.
* The right of workers to dignified employment and a just salary.
* A currency with which workers can acquire the goods necessary to support their families.
* The right to strike to obtain benefits not possible through conventional means.
* The guarantee of unemployment benefits and compensation in unavoidable situations.
* The right to march peacefully to demand the fulfillment of petitions and labor claims previously ignored by the administrators, or to demand fair wages.
* The creation of a new Code of Work and a new Labor Justice Administration law. The creation of a Woman’s Labor Law to grant women fair and equal juridical norms.
* Independent trade unions of Cuba should have a space for dialogue and reflection where their points of view can be expressed utilizing mainstream social and public mass media.
* The right to freely unionize and amnesty for political prisoners and prisoners of conscience.
* We oppose the persecution of independent trade unions.
* The CUTC deserves full legal recognition.
* International trade union solidarity
* Legal initiative regarding labor relations stemming from the worker’s movement.
* Freedom as an inalienable right and not a legally granted privilege.
* Civil society and trade union advocates must not be imprisoned.
* Cubans must not be unjustly arrested, discriminated against, harassed, or suppressed in the responsible exercise of their individual freedoms corresponding to societal values and the freedom of others.
* The right of Cubans to enjoy both material goods and spiritual fulfillment, while taking leading roles in the different economic, political, social, and cultural arenas in the life of the nation.
* The right to enjoy both private and collective property, as well as the legal and moral benefits derived from these, without any limitation beyond the respect for others’ rights and the enjoyment of identical prerogatives.
* The right to support the creation of non- governmental organizations that protect human rights and endorse dialogue at all levels, once the democratic processes have been expanded and consolidated.
* Congresses that do not usurp its people’s rights or property.
* We support the solidarity created by programs of integration, particularly those relating to the fight against poverty, illness, illiteracy, and the exportation of these philosophies abroad.
* We support the values of democracy, rule of law, civil society practices, political pluralism, respect for individual rights, and basic freedoms on which civil and political relations rest. These values are fundamentally attached to the principles of national sovereignty, equality before the law, democratic governance, equity, social justice, and peace.
* Self-determination and the election of the political system must occur under conditions of independence and personal sovereignty. It must be decided by means of a popular vote, in multi-party elections where citizens choose freely between various political ideologies and parties are elected without restrictions.
* Solidarity as the recognition of human dignity and social justice, through equal rights and opportunities, based on the respect for individual specificities.
* Peace, as the fruit of a legitimate social justice system that integrates various sectors and favors the consolidation of culture.
* That the Cuban family should fulfill its essential role, recognizing the fundamental responsibility and authority of parents to their children and their inter-relation, as part of the process of integration into society.
* Social values are consolidated within the family, as the family is the best vehicle for integration into society, instilling values, and promoting lifelong ethical behavior.
* The national education system must create solidarity and strive towards the personal development of its students so that Cubans understand and accept one another, and live freely in a tolerant and responsible manner.
* Education must be available to all. It should promote and encourage true Cuban values, while strengthening the role of the individual. Education should be exempt from ideological and political ideologies that adulterate or warp historical, cultural, social, economic, and moral phenomena.
* Youth have the right to pursue vocational studies of their choosing.
* The elimination of countryside schools, giving parents the right to educate their children in true ethics and family values.
* Our national culture should recognize traditional Cuban values characterized by our unique identities, idiosyncrasies, and collective experience.
* Public health services should be improved by the constant presence of doctors in public welfare centers, polyclinics, offices, and hospitals, among others.
* The public health system should not be a burden for the national budget or depend upon centralized decisions.
* The State should oversee and control public health in a decentralized form, building and improving existing health institutions and lending credit to encourage investment in the medical service industry.
* Medical education ensures the training of highly qualifies health providers. This education should be void of political ideology and result from the students’ free choice as a result of his or her aptitude and desire.
* The elimination of institutions that offer exclusive medical assistance to political leaders or foreigners or for some other reason.
* Religious institutions established within our country should take part in public welfare planning to preserve the existing institutions and permit the introduction of others that broaden such participation.
* Cities should be free of vagrant and infected animals that spread disease to citizens.
* The environment should be preserved, as it forms a crucial part of our health and policies on conservation and the ecological equilibrium of the environment should be reformed through non-governmental organizations and others who can elaborate programs and strategies to maintain biological diversity and the ecosystem.
* Cubans must have the opportunity to become the center, author and end goal of economic activity. This is an integral part of social freedom.
* Economic development policies should harmonize with norms of social justice.
* Economic growth factors should have society’s collective needs as its goal.
* The joint action of the State and investors should become experiences that ensure the promotion of the dignity of Cubans, and not an experiment which fails to guarantee stable employment, professional development, technological modernization, and productive transformation.
* Economic development is a task and not a national goal, since models and the experiences corresponding to other regions, cultures, societies, realities, identities, and philosophies cannot be properly applied in Cuba.
* That employment is a right and it should be appreciated as an act of production that serves the common good and takes precedent over state structures. Employment should be the path to personal fulfillment and both personal and collective wealth.
* Workers should participate in the design of economic and social planning through trade union organizations and non non-governmental organizations and independent professions.
WE WAIT FOR THE RELEASE OF PEDRO PABLO, THE TRADE UNIONISTS THAT STILL SUFFER IMPRISONMENT, THE REMAINING 75 AND THE REST OF THE PRISONERS OF CONSCIENCE.