Letter in Commeration of “The Filipino People’s Resistance to Nestle’s 100 years of brutal exploitation”

June 7, 2011

Dear friends,

We, the members of Philippine – United States Solidarity Organization or PUSO in Seattle convey our highest militant salute to the Nestle workers, Pamantik-KMU and the Filipino people on your 100 years of struggle against exploitation, repression, oppression and terror brought on by the Nestle Company.

We have learned that Nestle – representing foreign monopoly capitalists – has spent an exorbitant amount to advertise its 100 year presence in the Philippines.  Unfortunately, the Filipino workers find no cause to celebrate a neocolonial relationship rooted in servitude and abuse.  We recognize that money spent for company aggrandizement and lavish extravaganza was extracted from the labor of Filipino workers whose unjust wages are not enough to live sufficiently.  We write this statement to express our solidarity with you in your struggles for justice and genuine democracy.  Since 2005 we have been your strong ally and supporter here in the U.S.  Though we are thousands of miles away, we remain mindful of the inhumane working conditions for those who toil for the profits of Nestle.  We remain inspired by the working people of the Philippines and their durable record of resistance against foreign military and corporate domination.

For more than 100 years, the labor organizing efforts against the Nestle Company have remained steadfast in both analysis and dedication to the cause for justice and lasting peace.  Such conviction is truly honorable considering the sanctioned attacks of the state to mobilize terror and torture upon the Filipino working classes.  We speak most recently about the brutal murders of labor martyrs Meliton Roxas on January 20, 1989 as well as Diosdado Fortuna – more commonly known as Ka Fort – on September 22, 2005.  Ka Fort’s death was especially difficult for members of PUSO as a month before his assassination a delegation of our members had the opportunity to visit and interview him.  Through his soft, powerful, and eloquent voice we learned about the workers’ struggles against Nestle and his relentless faith in the power of the Filipino people.  Ka Fort’s death, the 48 others who died in the same struggle, as well as our living brothers and sisters who continue to hold the picket lines in the Philippines are the seeds from where thousands of other militant activists will grow inspired and blossom.

The world watches, as the Nestle Company remains indifferent to the sufferings it causes the working people of the Philippines.  The world witnesses the arrogance and greed of the Nestle Company as it refuses to negotiate with the Pamantik-KMU at the factory in Cabuyao, Laguna Philippines despite the various rulings in favor of the union by the National Labor Relations Commission, the Court of Appeals, and the Supreme Court of the Philippines.  Nestle’s open disregard for such rulings clearly demonstrates the mockery of Philippine law when it stands against the power and profit of the elite.

From our position in the United States, we will continue to educate and share the Filipino workers’ struggle against Nestle to our respective networks.  Furthermore, we will continue to support the ongoing campaign to boycott Nestle products.  We are confident that your efforts will be victorious on the path towards a country liberated from foreign domination and corporate greed.  The workers of the world draw great inspiration from the Philippine struggle in your historic efforts to break free from the shackles of capital.  Until you, the workers of Nestle are able to produce in an environment of freedom, liberty, and self-determination, we the members of PUSO will be with you in militant solidarity.

PUSO – Seattle

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