The long struggle by workers and their union at the Haft Tapeh sugar complex in Shush, Iran to secure wages unpaid since July 2017 has ended with full payment of the massive wage arrears to all company workers. Permanent and temporary Haft Tapeh workers have now been paid their arrears through mid-January of this year.
There is unfinished business: the company has not recognized the union, which was established in the course of a 42-day mass strike over unpaid wages in 2008. The union continues to insist that daily contract workers are also paid the wages owed them. And there are no guarantees that management will not revert to form and again deny workers their wages.
It is nonetheless an important success for the workers and the union, who showed unwavering determination and discipline in the face of consistent provocation and brutality by the employer, the police and the local authorities. The rolling strikes and demonstration underway since December have been an object lesson in the power of solidarity, and international support was crucial in publicizing the workers’ fight and sustaining morale.
The Haft Tapeh Sugar Workers’ Union has expressed its warm appreciation for the solidarity and support they have received.