(MENAFN - Khaleej Times) Jordan Petroleum Refinery Company (JPRC) employees will start an open-ended work stoppage on Wednesday after the management refused to respond to their demands for improved working conditions, according to a union official.
The workers, who pledged to maintain operations in branches providing services to the country's most sensitive sectors such as hospitals, security agencies and airlines, said they decided to carry out the work stoppage to pressure the administration to fulfil previous promises they made.
"The company, which has more than 3,700 employees, made outstanding profits in 2011 ranging between JD70-80 million. This high margin of profits would not were been achieved if it were not for the dedication and hard work of the company's employees and they must be rewarded for that and their efforts have to be appreciated in a practical manner," Khaled Ziud, head of the General Trade Union of Petroleum and Chemical Workers, told The Jordan Times yesterday.
According to the union official, workers want a JD100 monthly raise on their basic salaries, end of service compensation, transportation allowance for workers living in areas not covered by the JPRC transport fleet and establishment of a housing fund for staff.
"We understand the repercussions of the open-ended strike, but we have been talking with management for some time and in our latest meeting with them last Tuesday, we reached a deadlock. They say the major share of profits goes to the government in accordance with an exclusivity agreement, but this is not the workers' problem because they worked hard and gave their best to enhance the company's productivity," Ziud said.
He added that the workers have been complaining for years and the management has been turning a deaf ear to their demands, noting that the cost of living is increasing constantly.
"These are men who have responsibilities towards their families. They want to provide a decent life for their children. Unless they have job security their productivity will always be at stake," Ziud stressed.