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Tell Borusan Group: Respect Dockworkers

29 Apr 2024

"In March, Liman-İş started organizing at Borusan Port in Turkey and, in a short time, 70% of the dockers at the port became members of our trade union.

Borusan Port management fired six dockers because they were union members.

In response, we carried out a four day protest at the port to reinstate the workers who were expelled, improve the working conditions at the port and guarantee the rights of the workers with a collective bargaining agreement.

We completely stopped the port.

On the evening of the fourth day, the employer called in police teams to the port in an attempt to intimidate us. We said we would not give up our rightful struggle as the company’s actions are not legal according to ILO conventions 87 and 98.

As a result of negotiations, an agreement was reached that the six dismissed workers would be taken back and that there would be no obstacle to the union.

Borusan Port management and Borusan Group, to which it is affiliated, reinstated the sacked dockers but reneged on their promise and continue to oppose the union.  Furthermore, on May 21st, Borusan sacked a further 37 workers who were all Liman-İş members.  Some were even sacked by WhatsApp message.

Just like the promise we made to our members on day one, we will never give up our resistance and struggle. We urgently need global solidarity. Together we have meaning. We will never give up!"

Fatih ÖZPINAR, General Secretary, Liman-İş



Our petition to Erkan Kafadar, CEO Borusan Group  ✍️

Dear Erkan Kafadar,

We are writing to protest the anti-union behaviours of management at Gemlik Borusan Port used against the dockers for joining the trade union Liman-Iş.

This action contravenes the Turkish Constitution which enshrine the right to belong to a union and of collective bargaining as a constitutional right.

This action contravenes ILO conventions 87 and 98, to which Turkey is a party.

We call on Borusan Port management and Borusan Group, to fulfil their promises to:

- Recognise Liman-İş as the union chosen by dock workers

- Improve working conditions at the port

- Guarantee the rights of the workers with a Collective Bargaining Agreement.

We encourage you and your management team to work with Liman-İş and resolve this dispute through dialogue.


In partnership with Liman-İş union - Turkey