Honorary Member – Mansour Osanloo, Labor Rights in Iran

WHEREAS, in July 2007, Mansour Osanloo, President of the Tehran Bus Workers’ Union, was dragged from a Tehran bus by Iranian security forces. Three months later he was sentenced to five years in prison on charges of “acting against national security” and “propaganda against the state”; in 2010 another year was added to his sentence. His only crime has been to help found a genuinely democratic trade union for his fellow bus drivers in Iran; and

WHEREAS, during his long confinement, Brother Osanloo had a heart attack in his cell at Rajai Shahr Prison, Iran. Two days later he was transferred to a hospital where he was shackled to his bed by metal cuffs on his hands and feet. He has been repeatedly denied medical leave from Rajai Shahr Prison, contrary to recommendations of the prison doctor; and

WHEREAS, Brother Osanloo’s treatment is not an isolated case in Iran. There is continuous harassment of the independent trade union movement. Currently, over 50 trade unionist teachers, food workers, journalists, and lawyers are jailed in Iran for supporting independent unions; and

WHEREAS, Mansour Osanloo was released from prison on June 2, 2011 after a storm of international protest. But two other leaders of the bus workers’ union are still in jail; Ebrahim Madadi and Reza Shahabi; and

WHEREAS, the Teamsters Union joins with unions worldwide demanding that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad take all necessary measures to stop, without delay, the harassment and abuse of trade union members and demand the release of all detained trade unionists who are still in prison simply because they exercise their legitimate human rights to freedom of association.

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the International Brotherhood of Teamsters award honorary membership to Mansour Osanloo in recognition of his struggle for freedom of association. Through this recognition we honor all members of the Tehran Bus Workers’ Union; and will continue to campaign for the release of Ebrahim Madadi, Reza Shahabi and all jailed Iranian workers. Their struggle is our struggle; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Teamsters will work with unions worldwide to warn all investors, especially those investing workers’ capital, of the grave risks of investments in Iran and Iranian controlled enterprises due to the disrespect of basic worker rights and the rule of law in Iran.