Saturday, October 29, 2016

Fuel Tank Drivers Strike Over Safety and Security

More than 1,000 fuel tank drivers in Jakarta, employed by Pertamina Patra Niaga, are planning to take strike action next Tuesday, 1 November 2016. The drivers, members of the Indonesian Port and Transport Workers’ Federation (FBTPI), plan to bring the tanks to a halt to demand greater job security and workplace safety.
A photo of tank workers' previous strike in 2014
The drivers often work shifts of more than 12 hours a day. These long work hours lead to fatigue which causes road accidents. In the last year, four drivers have died as a result of these unsafe conditions.

Workers are also demanding that Patra Niaga pay them overtime in accordance with the law. Since 2007, the company has refused to pay overtime to workers, despite the drivers working more than 40 hours a week.

Another problem the workers face is lack of secure employment. Many of the workers are kept on short-term contracts. Some of them have had their contracts extended 10 times. This is illegal in Indonesia, where contract work is only allowed for short-term projects. The drivers are therefore demanding permanent employment.

Ahead of the strike, the company has threatened to bring in the military to replace striking workers. Meanwhile the mainstream media is claiming the striking workers will cause fuel shortages. But really, the blame for any shortages lies with Patra Niaga – the company has left the workers with no other option but to take this action.

KPBI Union Sticker: 1 November 2016, Support the Tank Driver Strike Against PT Pertamina Patra Niaga