Skip to content

From Spain to Subway

CEA General Strike poster image

A general strike poster from CEA (Colectivo Estudiantil Alternativo) in Salamanca depicts a meat grinder. Going in: education, social services, labor rights. Coming out: cutbacks, insecurity, labor reform, salary reductions, unemployment, scholarship reductions, and more.

A story and detailed timeline in The Guardian today talk of “near-empty railway stations, shut factories,” marchers in the streets and some violence in Madrid and other cities across Spain. The response by workers was greater than similar actions in 2010 and 2002, according to the article. An indication of an industry-sector shutdown was a drop in electricity consumption of 17%. The head of UGT (General Workers), which has 1 million members, claimed that 97% of workers in industry and construction participated, with the overall participation at 77%.

Yesterday in New York, a coalition of rank-and-file members of Transport Workers Union Local 100, Amalgamated Transit Union, and Occupy Wall Street opened the doors to more than 20 subway stations, to protest “escalating service cuts, fare hikes, racist policing, assaults on transit workers’ working conditions and livelihoods — and the profiteering of the super-rich by way of a system they’ve rigged in their favor,” according to a statement by the “Rank and File Initiative,” reprinted on Accompanying the freebies were faux signs from the Metro Transit Authority:

The MTA is determined to make the highest profit off your commute. We apologize for the recent service cuts and fare hikes but they were necessary […] our friends on Wall Street. Enter this station for free through the service entrance. Be prepared for expanded free service until the resolution of contract negotiations in favor of TWU Local 100. [transcribed on]

Transit Leaflets photo image

A faux MTA "Planned System Change" at left proclaims free entry in a New York subway; at right is a “Planned System Interruption” for May 1. (Photo posted on

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *