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Italian Port Workers Begin Strike Over Vaccine Requirement

Dock workers in Trieste, Italy, have gone on strike in protest of the need that all employees present a Covid card.

The Green Pass indicates whether you have received the Covid vaccination, whether you have recovered from it, or whether you have tested negative.

On Friday, it became required in all Italian businesses.

Approximately 2,000 employees have congregated at the port of Trieste, which serves northern Italy, Germany, Austria, and central Europe.

It is believed that over three million Italian employees are currently unvaccinated.

Only 40% of the 950 port workers in Trieste have received the vaccine. Workers at other ports, such as Genoa, have threatened to disrupt supply networks as well.

There were also threats of protests at airports, highways, and trains, as well as disruptions to public transportation in Milan’s industrial center.

The plan to make the Covid pass mandatory for workers is one of the most draconian anti-Covid policies in the world.

A worker who does not have a Green Pass faces being fired without pay and fines of up to €1,500 (£1,270; $1,740).

The permit was already necessary for teachers and other school employees, as well as access to bars and restaurants, as well as recreational places like as theaters and football stadiums, when it was launched in June.

It is being extended by Italy’s coalition government, led by Mario Draghi, in the hopes of preventing another shutdown.

According to an Ipsos poll released this week, two-thirds of Italians believe it is necessary.

Opponents, however, rioted in Rome on October 9th. During conflicts with police, the far-right Forza Nuova party led violent demonstrators who vandalized the CGIL trade union building in Rome.

Over 85 percent of Italians over the age of 12 have had at least one jab.

“It’s time to halt the economy,” port workers’ spokesperson Stefano Puzzer told Rai TV. “This is maybe the only way we can convince this administration that many people are hurting.”

“Many people will continue to be unemployed just because they choose not to get the vaccination.”

Ministers have downplayed worries of anarchy, citing the high immunization rate as an example.

However, because many lorry drivers are immigrants who are either unvaccinated or have taken jabs that are not recognized by the European Medicines Agency, there is a risk of disruption in the transportation industry. According to Umberto Ruggero of Italy’s logistics organization, 30 percent to 40 percent of the workforce may not show up. He described a “perfect storm,” referring to the sector’s chronic understaffing.

Trieste dock workers offered to halt their strike provided the government postponed making the Green Pass mandatory until the end of October, but Rome refused.

Confindustria, a business lobbying group, is a big supporter of the Green Pass. Italy was the first European country to experience a healthcare catastrophe as a result of the epidemic, with over 130,000 Covid fatalities.

There are concerns that Italy’s pharmacies may be unable to cope with the increased demand for Covid tests under the new system.

Unions were unable to get free worker exams, which were also requested by Matteo Salvini’s populist League, which is currently in power.

“We will not be able to provide a swab every 48 hours to all the unvaccinated,” said the League’s Luca Zaia, governor of the heavily industrialised Veneto region in the north-east.

“The corporate folks I’m talking to are quite concerned,” he added.

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