After more than 2 months, unions voluntarily suspend Peru’s teachers’ strike. They vow to continue the fight.
Union leader Pedro Castillo pronounced a temporary suspension of Peru’s ongoing teachers’ strike this past Saturday.
“It’s just and necessary for our students, parents of families, and our community a whole,” declared Castillo as he announced the union’s reasons for the suspension.
Unions reject claims by the media that the protests are connected with terrorism and say this is an excuse to discredit their movement. Peru’s government confirms that they are not equating teachers with terrorists.
There is some historical basis to why they are striking; public teachers’ salaries are much lower than what they were before the economic crisis of the 1980’s. They have remained stagnant despite extraordinary economic growth in the last two decades. Investment in education is significantly lower by percentage of GDP in Peru than in neighboring Latin American countries,
The unions claim that the decision was made voluntarily and not through an agreement with the government. Despite the Peruvian government’s efforts, the terms offered by the Ministry of Education were far below those requested and unsatisfactory to protest leaders.
The strike has endured more than two and a half months. It evolved from an earlier strike in Cusco over the canceled Chinchero international airport contract.
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