Disruption at Genoa and Trieste ports as thousands protest 'Green Pass Day'

Crowd at the demonstration in Trieste

 ROME - On Friday the law stating all workers must have the Green Pass to access their workplace came into force, to the outrage of thousands of protesters, authorities report. Dock workers at ports in Trieste and Genoa have gone on strike.

 Though approximately a thousand people have participated in the demonstration at Gate Four of the port in Trieste, activity there has continued almost as normal, albeit slower than usual. All gates apart from number four are open and the internal train service is continuing regularly. There are currently no issues at the port in Naples, which is most likely because the vast majority of workers there are vaccinated. However, in northern Italy there are long queues of lorries stuck at the 'Ethiopian Gate' at the port in Genoa, where a large number of anti Green Pass workers are blocking the entrance.
 A few small protests have taken place in Rome, at Circo Massimo and Piazza di Porta Maggiore, and there may be more on Friday afternoon.

 Journalist Massimo Franco doesn't think the pressure will sway the government's strategy. He writes, “a U-turn would be a sign of weakness and go against a policy that is allowing us to win against the virus.”

 According to Il Corriere della Sera, the compulsory Green Pass has led to a four per cent reduction in staff for Milan's public transport. In other sectors, 30 per cent of lorry drivers, 15-20 per cent of factory employees, 8-9 per cent of supermarket employees, 60,000 law enforcement representatives and 250,000 public employees are still to be vaccinated.

 The League and Brothers of Italy parties have been pushing to lighten the restrictions, while Giuseppe Conte from the Five Star Movement (M5S) has suggested only adopting the measures where there is a high percentage of vaccinated citizens.

 According to a report from the Gimbe Foundation, there are 3.8 million workers in Italy without a ‘long-term’ Green Pass - the one issued after having received the vaccine. If one discounts people who are exempt and those who have recovered from Covid, the total decreases to 2 million workers. A report in Il Messaggero expects that given the anti-vax workers are also concentrated in certain sectors, the strikes will not have a significant impact on the country’s economy and functioning.