Histadrut dismisses train workers’ leader

Three additional members of the embattled worker's committee also removed over unauthorized strikes and erratic behavior.

July 1, 2012 18:51
1 minute read.
Jerusalem train station

Jerusalem train station 390. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)


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The Histadrut labor federation on Sunday removed the controversial head of the Israel Railways workers’ committee, Gila Edrai, from her post.

Three other members of the embattled workers’ committee were removed as well.

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The move came after a Histadrut disciplinary board ruled that the committee members held unauthorized strikes and behaved erratically in their battle to prevent Israel Railways from awarding a tender to a private company to carry out maintenance work on trains.

The workers’ committee had insisted that maintenance should be carried out by Israel Railways staff, and saw the tender as the first step toward privatization. It launched unpopular train strikes earlier this year that caused havoc on the rail network.

In its ruling on Sunday, the disciplinary board said that the committee “severely endangered the interests of workers” by their actions, and cited “inappropriate conduct toward the courts.”

Referring to repeated clashes with the National Labor Court and the committee members’ failure to appear in court on time, the board slammed “the disregard and debasement of Labor Court rulings,” which, according to the board, made the Histadrut look like an organization that breaks laws.

The railway workers’ committee said it was not surprised by the ruling, adding that “the Histadrut chose to carry out an invalid and illegal procedure.”

The committee also accused the disciplinary board of holding a stage trial, saying that the ruling would be appealed before a court this week.

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