GUE/NGL MEPs have expressed their solidarity with the 595 fired cleaners of the Greek Ministry of Finance today as 30 of the cleaning ladies brought their fight to the European Parliament in Strasbourg.

The cleaning ladies were fired on 18 September 2013, as a direct result of the deregulation of labour laws in Greece under the dictates of the Troika's economic adjustment programme.

The 595 cleaners have been resisting their dismissal ever since, holding protests to defend and secure their rights on a daily basis. Their resistance has been met with repeated violence from Greek police.

While an April court ruling stated that the cleaners were unfairly dismissed, the Ministry of Finance subsequently asked for a suspension of the decision which remains in effect. Now, the appeal has reached the Greek Supreme Court with the verdict set for 23 September. The 595 cleaners will be permanently fired if the Supreme Court decides to side with the Greek state’s appeal.

Greek MEP Kostadinka Kuneva reiterated the GUE/NGL Group's support for the cleaning ladies and its condemnation of the deregulation of labour laws in Greece.

She said: “The cleaning ladies' presence in the European Parliament is symbolic as it strengthens and internationalises their struggle against the complete deregulation of their labour rights, as well as their lives. It equally serves as a way of showing to the EU and the world the devastating consequences and impacts of the Greek economic adjustment measures on a typically vulnerable group of workers.”

GUE/NGL Press Contacts:
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08
David Lundy +32 470 85 05 09
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20
European United Left / Nordic Green Left
European Parliamentary Group

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