2,500 Histadrut members demonstrate at PM’s residence

On Thursday, Histadrut Chairman Avi Nissenkorn declared a labor dispute in the south over the matter, which opens the door to a general strike in that region within two week.

March 1, 2015 16:46
2 minute read.
Israel Chemicals

THE DEAD SEA WORKS in Sdom, the world’s fourth largest producer and supplier of potash products, is owned by Israel Chemicals Ltd. (photo credit: REUTERS)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Show me later Don't show it again

The Histadrut labor federation on Sunday said it turned out 2,500 protesters to demonstrate against layoffs at Israel Chemicals Ltd. in front of the Prime Minister’s Residence in Jerusalem.

The protesters, bused in from the South, included workers from ICL’s Bromide Compounds plant, where 140 layoffs are in the works, and its Dead Sea Works, where an addition 135 layoffs are expected in the coming months as part of an efficiency plan. The company fired dozens more in the past year.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

On Thursday, Histadrut chairman Avi Nissenkorn declared a labor dispute in the South over the matter, which opens the door to a general strike in that region within two weeks.

The company argues that it cannot fund jobs at the Bromide plant, which has been losing money in recent years, and blames the Histadrut for rejecting a generous package offering early retirement to laid-off workers over 55 and double the legally mandated compensatory benefits to those under 55.

The company accused the unions of “bolshevism” and election-oriented dramatics.

“The Histadrut and workers committee seek to impose the union’s control through violence, aggression and dangerous brutality, and do not hesitate to harm the southern residents’ routines and the best interests of most of the workers for this unacceptable and illegal goal,” the company said in a statement.

Last week, the Histadrut made good on a promise to “shut down the South,” blocking major traffic arteries in cities such as Arad, Dimona and Beersheba, and shutting down some government offices in those areas.

The prospect of another large-scale strike could spook investors, according to the Federation of Israeli Chambers of Commerce, a business group.

“The attempt to strike an entire region over a labor dispute at one plant is outrageous,” said FICC president Uriel Lynn.

“The Histadrut’s desire to expand the labor dispute from Israel Chemicals to a strike that encompasses the entire South is an extreme move that will chase investors away from Israel and ultimately lead to job losses,” he added.

Protesters’ chants demanding justice for the soon-to-be- unemployed were unlikely to get the attention of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He departed in the morning for Washington, DC, where he will address the America Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference and deliver a controversial speech to a joint session of Congress on the topic of Iran’s nuclear program.

Related Content

The Teva Pharmaceutical Industries
April 30, 2015
Teva doubles down on Mylan, despite rejection