South Korea: 150,000 rally on May Day to oppose government’s labor reforms [The Hankyoreh / 한겨레]
On May 1, 125th International Workers’ Day, the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) and the Federation of Korean Trade Unions (FKTU) organized the largest ever gathering for the holiday – with around 150,000 people attending – and expressed their opposition to government plans to restructure the labor market.
At 3 pm, about 50,000 members of the KCTU gathered for a demonstration at Seoul Plaza, with the city deploying an estimated 22,000 riot police. The KCTU members urged the government to stop its unilateral restructuring of the labor market that only asks workers to sacrifice without any sacrifices from the business world and called for the minimum wage, which is currently 5,580 won (US$5.17), to be increased to 10,000 won (US$9.26).
“We must move forward more forcefully to ensure basic labor rights for all workers, to prevent the public servants’ pension system from being changed for the worse, to crush fake normalization of public corporations, to get to the bottom of the Sewol tragedy, to repeal the worthless enforcement decree of the special Sewol Law, and to fix the political corruption brought to light by the Sung Wan-jong scandal,” KCTU President Han Sang-gyun said…
Excerpted; full article link: http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_national/689507.html