Workers at the Zanon ceramic tile factory – an inspiring, worker-run factory in Argentina – have asked us to gather international support to prevent their eviction.
The Zanon workers’ co-operative is called FaSinPat, short for Fabricas Sin Patrones, Factories Without Bosses. Their highly successful combination of direct action and direct democracy is a precious example of that other world that is possible and that is growing before our eyes.
Argentina’s movement of worker-run companies involves 15,000 workers in almost 200 democratic workplaces. It is building hope and a concrete economic alternative in the rubble of Argentina’s disastrous experiment with neoliberalism in the 1990s.
Recovered companies are run by assembly – one worker, one vote. In most of them, workers have decided that everyone should receive the same salary. They are proving the viability of an economy run on an entirely different value system – and they are growing. In the past year Zanon has increased its workforce from 300 to 450, a 50% increase, without the millions in public subsidies given to the former owner.
Zanon has cultivated a deep relationship with the surrounding community. For 20 years the poor neighbourhood of Nueva Espaqa next to the factory has been asking the provincial government for a health clinic. Earlier this year Zanon workers voted to build a community health facility in the neighbourhood and did so in three months flat.
Now the provincial government is threatening to illegally send in police to remove Zanon’s precious machines.The Zanon workers have told us that a massive international petition in support of their struggle could make a big difference with the various levels of courts and governments.
We urge you to sign the petition at http://www.petitiononline.com/zanon/petition.html and to forward this email to others encouraging them to do the same.
Thank you for your time and support,
Avi Lewis and Naomi Klein