EFJ Backs Greek Journalists in Strike to Protect Health Care and Pensions

Today the International Federation of Journalist and its regional group, the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), expressed their support for Greek journalists in their fight against the new law adopted by the Greek government that endangers journalists' health care and pensions.

Despite protests by all Greek unions and other social actors the new law goes into effect on October 1.

"We have closely followed this long struggle by our Greek colleagues to safeguard the social benefits and pension system in Greece," said EFJ Chair Arne König. "And we are extremely frustrated that despite all the demonstrations, strikes and other actions by our affiliates and other unions, the Greek government's plan to deprive people of decent working rights and pension schemes has succeeded"

Following previous mobilisations in November 2007 and February and March 2008, the Greek journalists' unions agreed to organise another 24-hour press and electronic media strike, which will take place on October 1 and 2.

By using journalists' social security funds' resources and reserves the government plans to weaken existing retirement terms and conditions. At the same time, the government is trying to raise the retirement age and other requirements and cut pension compensation.

During the strike called by the Panhellenic Federation of Journalists Unions:

* No news will be broadcasted and no programmes that have any journalistic, athletic or informational content will be aired from home or abroad.

* Greek public broadcaster ERT will suspend all television and radio broadcasting

* No press releases will be published and journalists will not be present in meetings, interviews or briefings

* On Thursday, October 2 there will be no circulation of any newspaper.

The EFJ and IFJ support the Greek unions' protest against the new law.

Messages of solidarity to the striking journalist and the unions can be sent to the following address: dralli@esiea.gr; famellos@esiemth.gr

For more information contact the EFJ at +32 2 235 2200
The EFJ represents over 250,000 journalists in over 30 countries worldwide