From Greece to the U.K. to now Spain. Hundreds of thousands of workers took to the streets in 57 cities across Spain over the weekend to protest the Conservative government’s new austerity package and labor reforms. As many as a half-million people demonstrated in Madrid alone according to reports.
Alongside new spending cuts – the Conservative government is slashing severance pay for workers and making it easier for companies to opt out of union contracts. Before the European debt crisis – Spain’s unemployment rate stood at just below 8% - but today it’s above 22% - which is the highest in the developed world. And as we’ve seen elsewhere across Europe – and in the United States – slashing government spending and taking money out of working people’s pockets only makes the situation worse.