Over 500 protest news from Venezuelan teachers. Last Minute WORLD headlines and events

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CARACAS –

More than 500 demonstrations took place in the first three weeks of the year as Venezuelan teachers took to the streets over issues such as low wages, constant power and water cuts, difficulty accessing fuel, and usurpation of earned rights.

Venezuela started the new year with teacher protests. More than 500 protests took place in the first three weeks of the year, according to the Venezuelan Observatory of Conflicts (OVCS).

Among the main demands at demonstrations led by teachers, but supported by civil servants and workers, especially medical workers, were such topics as higher wages, the return of social and medical guarantees, and improved working conditions.

In a country where one in two teachers, or 370,000 teachers, have quit since 2017 because they couldn’t meet their basic needs, one of the sectors hardest hit by the crisis are teachers, whose salaries have dropped to between $30 and $40 a month. .

In a country where the minimum kitchen expenses for a family of 5 are over $350, teachers are demanding, first of all, that their salaries be raised to $475.

Marlene Kerales, who has been teaching for nearly 20 years, claims that many of her colleagues, who couldn’t go to school because they had no money, did everything from cleaning the house to peddling to make a living, but the relevant authorities were indifferent to the subject, so many teachers had to retire.

“The fight for rights is more important than political demands”

In a conversation with VOA Turkish, OVCS co-founder Rodolfo Rico noted that almost all the demonstrations in the first 3 weeks of the year were led by teachers, and the protests were caused by poor working conditions, wages, social rights and the right to access education. , and other sectors also supported educators.

Rico said: “Recently, the protests in Venezuela have been mainly organized by civil servants, especially education and health workers, who are currently working with the lowest wages. In the past, protests that were mainly based on political demands have recently turned into a fight for rights,” he said.

Saying that presidential elections will be held next year, the official noted that the streets of Venezuela could be the scene of many demonstrations this year, with issues such as power, water and natural gas outages becoming chronic, fuel shortages, access to education being added. and health, as well as the economic hardships faced by the population.

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