• Costa Rica Coffee Guide

Ticos make safe exit from Bocas del Toro

July 9, 2010

 

Authorities evacuated nearly 100 Costa Ricans from the town of Changuinola, Panama, after violent protests had left tourists stranded in the country’s Caribbean region.
 
The Ticos made their exit just as the weeklong banana workers’ strike was coming to an end following violent clashes between protesters and state troops. Over the course of the protest, at least two people were killed and dozens more injured (some news sources reported as many as six deaths) as a result of a conflict that Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli said was based on “lies.”
 
“The problems in Changuinola have been the product of misinformation and a series of lies,” Martinelli said in a press statement issued Sunday. “The intransigence of a group of trade unionists can not end with the banana industry in Changuinola.”
 
The conflict emerged when the Bocas Fruit Company withheld the portion of workers’ salaries that normally goes toward paying union fees. The company subtracted the union membership fee in response to a recently enacted law that makes such fees optional.
 
“The government regrets the misunderstanding on the part of this company,” the Martinelli administration said in a press statement. “It is not in the power of this business, nor any other, to retain workers’ salaries because it constitutes a violation of workers’ rights.”
 
Under the law, the employees must decide whether to pay membership fees and the decision cannot be made for them by their employers.
 
The protest ended Sunday, when the government signed an agreement with the striking workers. According to the document posted on the Panamanian government website, the original law will not be changed, yet, the government committed to providing more resources to help workers confront the high cost of living.

You may be interested

Costa Rica unemployment rate drops to 19%
Costa Rica
2537 views
Costa Rica
2537 views

Costa Rica unemployment rate drops to 19%

The Tico Times - March 4, 2021

Unemployment in Costa Rica fell to 19.1% in the moving quarter from November to January. This maintained a downward trend…

Throwback Thursday: 2006 Arenal Volcano lava flows
Arenal
4796 views
Arenal
4796 views

Throwback Thursday: 2006 Arenal Volcano lava flows

The Tico Times - March 4, 2021

Arenal Volcano's July 1968 eruption destroyed three small villages, killed 87 people and wiped out 232 square kilometers of crops…

MOPT warns of higher traffic accidents as measures are eased
Costa Rica
1328 views
Costa Rica
1328 views

MOPT warns of higher traffic accidents as measures are eased

Alejandro Zúñiga - March 4, 2021

The Public Works and Transport Ministry (MOPT) is reminding drivers to follow the rules of the road when traveling this…