TODAY’S – Soma miners fired by text message awarded damages

Soma miners fired by text message awarded damagesA total of 20 Soma miners who were booted from their jobs via text message have been awarded damages by a local Soma court, according to a report by the Milliyet daily on Wednesday.More than 2,000 miners were fired from their jobs last year by the Soma Holding Company.

Soma Holding oversees the mine that witnessed Turkeyand#39s worst-ever job site accident last year when 301 miners died in an explosion. Following the disaster, it was found that the mine was operating amid a litany of poor working conditions and major safety violations.

Many of the fired miners had reported receiving text messages from their employer saying the company was scaling down its workforce and said they would sue the employer Although only 20 miners have been awarded damages according to the latest decision, there are upwards of 250 other lawsuits that have been filed by lawyers on behalf of Soma miners seeking damages, according to the report.If the Supreme Court of Appeals upholds the local courtand#39s decision, the 20 fired miners will each receive TL 40,000 in damages.

Meanwhile, the Akhisar High Criminal Court will proceed with the trial of 45 suspects in connection with the Soma disaster, nearly one year after it occurred.The trial is set to begin on April 13.

Prosecutors seek to charge Soma Holding board chairman Can Gurkan and seven other senior officials with first-degree murder, while prison terms of between 32 months and 20 years are being sought for eight other company employees on charges of homicide through willful negligence.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman