Ukraine: Workers of coal and uranium mines protesting against wage arrears

As the Independent Trade Union of Miners of Ukraine informed, since the last week in Donetsk oblast miners have refused to go down to the mine Ukraine of the SOE "Selydivvugilliya" till they get their wages. The wage arrears at the enterprise amount to UAH 195.13 million. Moreover, miners are concerned about the non-payment of money during the period of strict lockdown last spring. Instead of paying employees 2/3 of the tariff rate during the lockdown, as was required by law, the administration forced people to get unpaid leave for 1-2 months. For more than a year, under the pretext of lack of funds, those who decided to resign also haven’t received any payments.

On the 8th of December, miners of the SOE "Myrnogradvugillia" also started a protest in Myrnograd, Donetsk Oblast. According to the local organization of the NPGU, the wage arrears at this enterprise amounts to more than UAH 107 mln. Today miners of the largest mine of the SOE Myrnogradvugillia continued to refuse to perform their work and hold a protest action that led to the roadblocks in the center of Myrnograd was blocked.

In Lviv Oblast, on the 8th of December, 75 miners of the third shift of the mine "Lisova" of SOE "Lvivvugillia" refused to rise to the surface demanding to pay-off UAH 60 mln of the wage arrears. The Head of the local organization of the NPGU in Chervonograd Myrosava Kaftan met with protesters underground on 9th morning.

In Volyn Oblast, on 8th the miners of the second shift of the mine Buzhanska of the SOE "Volynvugillia" also refused to leave the mine and claimed that would stay underground till they get their wages. On 9th their colleagues from the first shift of the mine "№ 9 Novovolynska" refused to go down to the mine and gather near the building of the office of the SOE "Volynvugillia".

The NPGU Chairperson Mykhailo Volynets informed that miners of state-owned coal mines demand to immediately implement the provision of the law on Amendments of the Law on State Budget of Ukraine 2020 on allocating UAH 1.4 billion to pay salaries to employees of state-owned coal companies. The NPGU made appeals to the President of Ukraine on the problems of miners and ask to fulfill his promises given at the All-Ukrainian meeting of coal industry workers on the 25 of February 2020.

In the morning of 9th, in Kyiv miners of the uranium mines of the SOE "Eastern Mining and Processing Plant" held a demonstration near the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine and the Office of the President of Ukraine. Since December 7th, due to lack of funds, all divisions of the SOE "Eastern Mining and Processing Plant" work in idle mode. Thus, the production process was stopped at all three mines of the enterprise. That threatens bankruptcy of the enterprise in 1-2 months. Moreover, this can cause an ecological disaster in the region where 3 uranium mines are located.

The head of the organization of the NPGU at the mine Ingulska of the SOE "Eastern Mining and Processing Plant" Dmytro Bondariev informed about miners’ requirements. They demand:
- to pay off arrears of wages which amounts to UAH 143 mln,
- to restore the full operation of the enterprise as soon as possible and stabilize its financial situation of the enterprise.
- to take all possible measures to prevent the shutdown of SOE "Eastern Mining and Processing Plant".

Dmytro Bondariev handed these demands to the representatives of the Government and the Office of the President of Ukraine. At noon the miners and trade union representatives went to the negotiations with the government representatives.

KVPU information