Please include your full name and, if applicable, institutional affiliation.
To: The Hashoo Group; Pearl Continental Hotel (Rawalpindi)
CC: Prime Minister of Pakistan, Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani (firstname.lastname@example.org); Supreme Court of Pakistan (email@example.com)
The Hashoo group is at it again. This time they’ve sacked 350 workers from the Rawalpindi hotel, after management reacted viciously to union demands that the PC respect workers’ elemental labor rights. The central issue has been the request that the PC make permanent the employment of workers that—while classified as casual/temporary—have been a part of the PC Pindi for at least seven years.
The PC Pindi relies on a thoroughly unjust system of employment that informalizes permanent work, making it nearly impossible for workers to get basic benefits or salary raises. When the previous head of Human Resources, Major Nadeem, finally accepted the union’s demand, he was promptly fired by management. His successor, Colonel Zulfikar, has refused to even consider the workers’ demands. Instead, when workers expressed dissatisfaction, they were expelled from the hotel premises by 250 policemen, along with the DCO. Several of the workers are now on a hunger strike. Eleven have been hospitalized.
And the Hashoo Group is once again taking extreme measures: management has registered false police reports against 120 of the workers, charging them with attempting to set fire to the hotel—the same tactic that the management of the PC in Karachi used.
We, the undersigned, demand that the PC Hotel abide by the law and accept the workers’ demands:
GIVE US OUR JOBS BACK!
Firing of union activists while negotiations are ongoing is illegal.
NO MORE TEMPORARY WORK!
All temporary and casual workers should be given permanent status.
GIVE US OUR MONEY BACK!
The management must return ALL Provident Funds (i.e. workers pensions), a sizable portion of which it has seized.
FAIR PAY FOR FAIR WORK
Temporary workers at the hotel have worked at the PC for a minimum of 7 years. For the last several, wages have been stagnant, while the cost of living has skyrocketed. These workers must be paid salaries commensurate with their experience and work.