Declaration by Drífa Snædal, president of ASÍ: “Kópur” is not associated with the Icelandic Confederation of Labour

 “Kópur” is not associated with the Icelandic Confederation of Labour, has not signed any collective agreements, and is not a member of VIRK rehabilitation fund, Bjarg housing foundation, or any of the holiday, educational or sick leave funds operated by the Icelandic labour movement.Notices have been published announcing that a new trade union—Kópur—has been set up for the purpose of serving mainly Polish citizens working in Iceland. The union is presented as being able to provide access for its members to all benefits and services developed by the Icelandic labour movement over the decades, and it is even suggested that the union has links to the Icelandic Confederation of Labour. This is false.There are no links between ASÍ and Kópur, and we are not aware that Kópur has entered into any collective agreements. Kópur does not operate an education fund to make it easier for its members to increase their education; does not operate a sick leave fund for those who are unable to work for longer periods of time; does not have membership of Bjarg housing foundation, which provides low-rent, secure housing; does not have membership of VIRK vocational rehabilitation fund; and does not own holiday cottages. Potential members of Kópur would not enjoy any of these benefits, and would not have access to legal services or other types of help regularly provided by trade unions in Iceland.ASÍ urges everyone concerned to distribute this information as widely as possible, in order to avoid a situation where workers unwittingly relinquish rights that have been earned through the work of the labour movement over many decades.