Wednesday, March 26, 2008

After the (actual) success of last fall's "virtual picket line" in support of Italian IBM workers the employees involved have decided to extend the range of their activities at IBM's site on the virtual world 'Second Life'. this time they are protesting the IBM practice of outsourcing, cheap and easy way to drive down wages via increased job insecurity. See later for the statement of what the protest is all about. There is a training session tonight at for those new to the whole concept of the Second Life world. The actual demonstration at the site occurs tomorrow night. Here's what it's all about. For more information go to .

Global decisions from companies need Global action and response from employees. We saw that with the virtual strike and now we can do it with a virtual demonstration. The national unions, works councils and IWIS (IBM Workers International Solidarity) global network are organizing a global virtual demonstration against the outsourcing contract.

IBM is misusing outsourcing contracts to reduce the workforce in a cheap way. In this kind of contract, IBM is selling not only services and machines but also people. We can see that recently in the IBM NSD to AT&T contract and Printing Systems/ PSD maintenance to RICOH as well as other outsourcing deals.

IBM employees from Network Service Delivery are against forced outsourcing to AT&T and request negotiations right now!

AT&T market-share and competition in the European market and the past experience with this Telco provider leads to the conclusion that there is a high risk of job loss for the IBM jobs that will be transferred.

Therefore we, the International Unions at IBM, ask with 'One Global Voice' for IBM management to open negotiations immediately in countries and offer employees 'in scope' other options: voluntary-based transfers, guarantee of employment in the new company with a return ticket to IBM in case of failure within contract duration (5 years). Other options could be envisioned.

Different actions have taken place in different countries, demonstration, strikes, petitions online (535+ signatures collected), etc… over the past months. All of them are showing the large concern of the employees and their frustration and anger.

All unions clearly request IBM management to review this decision and to adjust it, taking into account respect for the employees as a person and recognize the need for job security on.
We are against forced jobs outsourcing to AT&T, RICOH, and future ones, and officially request win-win negotiations about job transfer terms and conditions, in the different countries, urgently!
On March 26, 2008 - IWIS (IBM Workers International Solidarity)

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