Report from Brazil on the current situation in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic.

From comrades of CSP Conlutas Brazil: As the economic crisis deepens, governments, employers and super-rich businessmen fear that they will not be able to guarantee profit above life. We, as representatives of organizations and entities in defence of the working class, must stop the attempt to make the price of this crisis fall on the backs of the workers. Here in Brazil, we remain firm in the denunciation against the Bolsonaro government, which openly maintains the criminal policy of allowing the population to die, going in the opposite direction to that advocated by health institutions and their recommendations.

It is necessary to guarantee the right to strike for life. And Italy has shown us the importance of defending this urgent agenda demanded by workers who fear for health risks.

Our position here in Brazil, especially considering several categories, including those in the automotive sector, is to defend the right to paid leave for everyone who is not responsible for the production or provision of essential services in the fight against the new Coronavirus pandemic.

In Brazil, thousands of workers in the industrial sector, civil construction, telemarketing and other non-essential areas continue to gather in their workplaces, in a potential source of contamination and dissemination of the new coronavirus. This situation is unacceptable.

CSP-Conlutas defends the general quarantine decree already for all workers who do not work in companies with strategic activities. The release must be guaranteed with paid leave, full wages, as well as job stability.

Affiliated entities are guided by mobilization to ensure the release of workers.

In the automotive sector, in São José dos Campos, pressure from the Metalworkers Union, affiliated to CSP-Conlutas, has already resulted in the release of work for approximately 25 thousand workers. To put pressure on the company, the entity published a decree calling for a general strike in the category.

The pressure took effect and in about three days after the decree, more than 30 factories in the base were stopped. Workers from companies such as Embraer, GM, Avibras, Panasonic, Eaton, TI Automotive, among others, were released.

The example, as we have seen all over the world, is able to delay the effects of the epidemic and the burden on health care services. Ignoring the need for social isolation can lead to a greater number of victims, which is even more unacceptable when those affected work in sectors that are not essential for the moment.

We need to overcome and break with this current model that puts profits above our lives. And we cannot put ourselves as simple numbers of statistics.

At the UAW, since March 22, more than 17 companions have died as a result of Covid-19.

It is urgent that we defend the conversion of the industry, including automotive, to meet the needs of respirators and protective equipment to face Covid-19.

We need to defend isolation and quarantine to workers around the world. And it is urgent that we mobilize and organize virtually, in order to raise the population's awareness, and to value the scientific notes that defend social isolation, in order to put pressure on governments, employers and entrepreneurs.

One suggestion, for the coming period, is that we organize virtual actions for the 1st of May. This is because it is a question of the working class that gains greater dimension as the pandemic begins to reach countries with more important social inequalities, in which poverty and the presence of the disease become a threat to the lives of these people.

This health crisis that amplifies the economic and social crisis is demonstrating the failure of this economic system that is unable to use all technological advances to save our lives. Because the objective of the system is to guarantee profit and capital accumulation. Only workers can present a revolutionary solution to the current situation, as the choice between socialism or barbarism is increasingly present.

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