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As long as there is Ukraine, there will be jobs and salaries

14 April 2014

Statement from metals workers of Mariupol

The future of Ukraine is at stake today.

Every day there is a growing wave of protests, seizures of administrative buildings, and attacks on offices and people.

All of this is an attempt to drag as many Ukrainians as possible into a violent confrontation.

Violence, vandalism and hooliganism should have no place under the flag of our country, under the flag of any political parties or public organizations.

Those who today, under the guise of patriotic slogans, participate in unlawful and provocative actions play into the hands of the separatists.

Think about it: in addition to political events and campaigns with slogans on city streets, real work is done every day to provide revenue for state and local government budgets and to produce and sell goods. Factories, plants and workshops of large and small businesses continue to operate.

This work allows us today to provide salaries and social guarantees to our fellow citizens. Industry is a platform not only for everyday life in Donbass, but for the independence of Ukraine as a sovereign and united country.

We make metal with our own hands and we know the value of our work. We remember how much sweat and blood it took from those who worked in the shops of Azovstal and Ilyich Iron & Steel Works of Mariupol before us, and we will not allow Ukraine to collapse or industry to collapse.

Those who are trying to divide the society today are in the minority; the majority of people in Mariupol are eager to see different things. We are waiting to see the order re-established and the bullying and frightening of people put to an end.

Fellow countrymen, do not let anyone drag you into political "disputes." Do not be enticed by manipulators or provocateurs.

Mariupol has more than 40,000 metal workers. Among us, there are different views and beliefs. However, our workshops are not the place for political fights or propaganda. They are for work, for constructive work. And we want to keep the peaceful traditions that Mariupol has always been famous for.

We continue to work and sincerely believe that together we will maintain the unity of Ukraine, keep peace and quiet in our city, and provide our families and our city with everything they need for a normal life. Metal workers say "yes" to the law, to work, to salaries and to social guarantees.

On behalf of PJSC Azovstal's workforce – N.P.Lekhov, chair of the Trade Union committee

On behalf of PJSC Ilyich Iron & Steel Works of Mariupol's workforce – M.I.Podyablonsky, chair of the Trade Union committee