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Seaports Hit by Slow-downs, Hospital Workers End Strike

January 5, 1973
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Israel’s three seaports were crippled by work slow-downs today as 4000 dockworkers demanded wage scales on a par with the much higher paid construction workers. The longshoremen at Haifa, Ashdod and Eilat instituted a “rule-book” action, refused to work overtime and in many cases went home before working their normal hours.

The action, a partial strike in effect, hit the ports at the peak of Israel’s citrus export season. Most citrus exports move through Haifa and Ashdod. The dock workers said they would not meet with Port Authority representatives unless the latter invite them.

New labor trouble erupted at Lod Airport, meanwhile, where 150 technical foremen employed by El Al staged a wild-cat strike shortly after midnight today in demand of higher wages. It was uncertain whether El Al would be able to maintain its normal flight schedules if the walk-out continues. Some 30,000 engineers and technicians who disrupted Israel’s communications with a 24-hour “warning strike” Tuesday, said they would stage a three-day strike beginning Jan. 15 if there is no progress in their negotiations for a higher wage scale.

A three-day strike by 6000 government hospital employees ended today in a victory for the workers. Health Minister Victor Shemlov agreed to their demand to apply the recommendations of a recent inquiry committee to the 22 government hospitals. The recommendations, which included higher wages, were accepted by Kupat Holim (sick-fund) and municipal hospitals. But Shemtov had insisted earlier that they were not binding on the government hospitals. He reversed himself after a meeting of a special ministerial committee this morning which authorized him to end the strike.

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