A group of 50 workers from the public company Samset in Torremolinos, who are in charge of the maintenance of pavements, plumbing, electricity, and the municipal tow truck gathered in front of the Town Hall to protest about the lack of protection and rotating shifts to prevent the coronavirus pandemic
The workers are protesting that the town hall has not facilitated them with correct equipment to do their job safely. They have only been provided with disinfectant gel and they argue, “latex gloves do nothing to protect [them] because [they] handle heavy materials and conduct electrical and plumbing jobs which mean they break instantly. The use of the gloves is insufficient to work with safety and avoid any infections”.
Antonio Gomez, the union liaison for a staff of around 127 people, has stated “the union has not organized a protest before the city council. Rather it was a spontaneous concertation of workers who all demanded the same criteria to be applied to them as it was to those in the cleaning or operating service”. Contrastingly, these workers have all received masks and have reorganized their shifts to be from 8:00am to 12:00pm and for there to only be around 10 or 15 workers at a time.
They are simply asking for the same conditions as the other workers. Gomez continues to say, “in no moment have we refused to do our work, but we also have families like the rest of the citizens, and we are worried about the risk of infection”. They also called out the councillor Antonio Navarro “for refusing to pick up the phone and communicate back to them, via the chief of service, that whoever didn’t want to work to take vacation days”.
Torremolinos’ Town Hall denies what the workers assure, and they state that all workers dispose of the appropriate equipment. Municipal sources confirm that they all have masks and gloves, and that all of their equipment, including vehicles, are disinfected on a daily basis. They also denied having said the comment about vacations as, evidently, they are very much needed these days because of the vital role they have in the maintenance of services in Torremolinos.