On April 10th, five of eight fasting nurses completed eight days on hunger strike, and for the second consecutive day they were gagged in order to avoid drinking liquids for ten hours as part of their protest outside Rafael Pascacio Gamboa Hospital in Tuxtla Gutierrez. This protest seeks to obtain medical supplies and medicines for the more than one thousand health centers in the state, the reinstatement of several workers unfairly dismissed and the payment of quotas for pensions, insurance, savings fund, housing, etc. This quota was paid by the workers on a monthly basis (a total of 782 million pesos).
On the same day, members of the National Assembly of Social Organizations-Teachers’ and Popular Movement, attended by teachers of the National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE), marched in Tuxtla to the outskirts of the Hospital and expressed their support for the struggle of workers in the health sector. Dozens of civil organizations have also expressed their support.
For his part, the Secretary of Government of Chiapas, Juan Carlos Gomez Aranda, said that through dialogue “the three original petitions have been resolved”: immediate resettlement in their jobs of people dismissed, supply of medicines and payment of Labor benefits. He added that, “the resignation of the director and the administrator of the Regional Hospital was requested in lieu of the complaints raised, so in the spirit of honouring the agreements to lift the hunger strike and not put at the health of nurses risk, the state government accepted this approach.” However, he added that “once this additional point was overcome, the negotiation table was again conditioned with the dismissal of the Secretary of Health (Francisco Ortega Farrera), which does not correspond to the original or subsequent demands of the nurses who are still fasting at the Regional Hospital.” Gomez Aranda said that “new requests are expected to be channeled through negotiation and that they should return as soon as possible with their families and their daily activities.”
The Fray Bartolome de Las Casas Center for Human Rights (FRAYBA) accepted the request of the strikers to accompany them in the process of negotiation with the state government.
For more information in Spanish:
Acción Urgente del Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Mujer de Chiapas (6 de abril de 2017) – Firma en línea
Se amordazan enfermeras en ayuno en Chiapas (La Jornada, 10 de abril de 2017)
ONG brindan respaldo a enfermeras en huelga de hambre en Chiapas (Proceso, 10 de abril de 2017)
Gobierno de Chiapas responde a demandas de las enfermeras en huelga de hambre (La Jornada, 10 de abril de 2017)
Emiten medida precautoria para garantizar salud de enfermeras en huelga de hambre (Proceso, 6 de abril de 2016)
Enfermeras de Chiapas en huelga de hambre acusan “arrogancia” de autoridades estatales (Proceso, 5 de abril de 2016)
For more information from SIPAZ:
Chiapas : Cinco enfermeras inician huelga de hambre en Tuxtla Gutiérrez (3 de abril de 2017)