Social organizations have staged a countertrade fair at Buenos Aires' iconic Plaza de Mayo (in front of Casa Rosada, the Presidential HQ) and at other squares nationwide to protest against what they call the demise of the monthly wage.
If you do not make ends meet, come with your blanket, announced the organizers through social media: The salary is dead, they insisted. Barter is back, they added.
The deployment by the picket-mounting Frente de Organizaciones en Lucha (FOL) started at 10 am in Plaza de Mayo and at Plaza San Martín in Mar del Plata and Plaza Belgrano in Jujuy.
The assortment of articles on display was significantly wide, from toys and textiles to agriculture and farm and pig breeding products.
The FOL and the other Unidad Piquetera groups had demanded a salary in line with the inflationary increase in the country and the food basket when marching to the Labor Ministry. The organizations also denounced hunger and poverty, while putting forward specific courses of action.
They also denounced that the workers of the social organizations were returning to barter, in order to make ends meet; we produce every day, throughout the length and breadth of the country, but we are still poorer and poorer.
The measure came a month after the Wage Council meeting where an insufficient wage increase was defined that does not recover anything of what was lost in the face of inflation, millions of workers are once again below the poverty line, the leftwing organizations argued.
The Total Basic Food Basket, which a family needs in order not to be poor, rose to $120,000, being food the products that registered the highest increase. Half of the families in the country ARE POOR, while a small handful of agro-exporters, banks, and powerful businessmen increase their profits obscenely, with the condescension of the National Government, La Izquierda Diario noted.
We, the workers, produce, but even many with white jobs are also poor today. For this reason, social organizations will organize a day of barter throughout the country, they insisted.
Countertrade fairs were a usual feature throughout most Argentine crises, particularly those of 1989 and 2001.
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