Another dead person, unfortunately, in a so-called “workplace accident” which is nothing else but a manslaughter as a result of the policies followed by the employers. We would like to express our sadness for the death of Odysseia Iakovou Taylor and condolences to her family and friends. The accident took place on Saturday in Strovolos, Nicosia, at a café restaurant on Tseriou Avenue, when 24-year-old Odysseia Iakovou Taylor went to get juice from the pantry room and was crushed by metal shelves that fell on her. The staff at the restaurant reportedly had complained about the shelves not being affixed to the wall which constitutes a violation of the labor standards.
The last years, and especially the last two, the “workplace accidents” have been dramatically increased in the Republic of Cyprus. This increase concerns all the economic sectors, particularly in the hotel and catering industries. From 2013 up to 2017 the percentage has reached to 74% while the frequency reaches to 41%.
It’s clear that the increase directly links with the capitalist crisis which manifested in Cyprus as well. The employers and in general the owners of the means of production in the capitalist relations, aiming to maintain their profits and unceasing reproduction of the capital, engineer all the ways that will allow them to continue this process. Within this framework a lot of employers avoid to oblige with the protection regulations and safety/health measures in the workplaces. Therefore, the bourgeoisie, apart from the unpaid wage labor (surplus-value), they also obtain privately-capitalistically the amount that they should have distributed for the safety of the workplaces.
In this way they manage to significantly minimize their costs ensuring their profit levels. Violation of the safety regulations and labor standards, flexible working hours and work models, part-time employment, non-social insurance etc are all part of this strategy followed by the capital, particularly in the current working conditions. Having this in mind, we consider that there is an imperative need for the working class and especially for the youth to organize its resistance against the capitalist policies. The working people have to respond with a class struggle against the continuous bourgeoisie attack and claim all their rights. This needs to be connected with the ultimate goal of overthrowing the exploiting capitalist system and pursuing social liberation.