Two railway workers from Gurjaani, a town in Georgia’s eastern Kakheti region, launched a hunger strike on 15 August, after being forced to move their jobs.
In the villages around Armenia’s Lake Sevan, for up to 10 months of the year the men work away in Russia to earn enough money for the family to survive. This leaves the women alone to complete the back-breaking farm work — and the children growing up without their fathers. [Read more…]
A construction worker died in the village of Kheta, western Georgia, on 7 August after being hit by a car. [Read more…]
Faced with staggering unemployment and unscrupulous employers, young people in Armenia, including graduates, are forced to work obscene hours for low (or no) pay to get a foot through the door in the country’s labour market.
Two workers were injured on 29 July after an accident in a tunnel they were working on. Despite denials from the construction company, trade unions claim that labour safety rules were breached.
Over 1,000 workers were killed or injured in occupational accidents in Georgia from 2011–2016, according to data compiled by the Applied Research Company, a consultancy. Almost every month, yet another worker plunges to his death from Tbilisi’s shockingly unprotected highrise construction sites or a story of worker humiliation or exploitation hits the news. Labour issues have returned as fertile ground for Georgian activism.
In May 2016, Tbilisi’s Kiwi Café — a vegan hangout for city hipsters — was hit by nationalist youths armed with meat sausages. The grotesque spectacle was obvious click-bait in today’s attention seeking social media, but it did highlight a new trend: social and lifestyle issues increasingly trump Georgia’s latent political rifts, and young people are at the forefront of this evolution.