Global Inquiry Interviews

Christina, Journalist, Spain

Workers Hearing: Madrid 23 February 2013

I was working for a state TV broadcaster in Madrid. They are cutting a lot of public services. They decided to dismiss all the workers on TV. I was dismissed one month ago.

On one side we have austerity cuts because of the crisis, the cuts in public service in community and the country. And on the other side we have ideological decisions that are made because of positions that staff held that are different to the Government. These austerity measures will not help the Spanish economy.
People need to have an income. But the government is not listening to people. Employers won’t share their wealth. It feels like a dictatorship. You feel impotent when the government treats you like this.

There is a feeling of hopelessness, people are afraid, the medium wages in Spain are very low. When you finish unemployment benefit, things get very bad, very quickly. Children go to school without having breakfast and don’t get lunch.

I have a one year old daughter, Julia. I hope when she is older things will be better. I’m very afraid that we can’t guarantee a good future for our children.

People are bitter. The cuts on budgets and to our rights are coming from outside, like a dictatorship. Our Government could say no – they could choose a different path.
If you can’t bargain, you can’t get a decent wage. But the choice you get is between keeping your job accepting lower wages and trying to bargain collectively and being dismissed.

This is a challenge, we are in poverty and there are tough decisions to make. But we have to keep fighting.