My New Work Situation

…after having promoted “The Cuban Museum of Dissent”

Yanelys Nunez Leyva

Yanelys-despidoHAVANA TIMES — Thirty days after the directors of the Revolucion y Cultura magazine where I worked put into effect a precautionary measure so they could investigate and see whether I had “inappropriately used IT equipment and the center’s internet for purposes outside of my job as the magazine’s cultural promoter and outside of the institution’s work policy”[1].

On July 1st, I was informed, via a Rescission of Contract, that my employment at the institution had been permanently terminated because “I had damaged the system’s, institution’s or country’s image by communicating malicious or misleading information.”[2]

As I read the Rescission, it became more and more tedious. At the end of it, I didn’t know whether they had fired me because they found “traces of connections to websites such as, and”[3] in my internet records; or whether it was about me promoting the Cuban Museum of Dissent in an interview I gave to Ernesto Perez Chang, and the online comments and outcries that it provoked because of the unfair attitude my magazine’s directors adopted.

If it’s about the former, if they deem these digital magazines to be “irrelevant and unnecessary for the jobs they gave me to do”[4] they’re overlooking the fact that, as an art historian, every media channel is valuable to my personal growth.

Moreover, being aware of what is happening on different platforms gives me a much wider view on the national and international cultural scene.

But forget about that, what really topped it all off was the fact that I had never even been warned about the websites I could and couldn’t look at in my four years of working there.

If I was fired for the second reason, I’d like to contend that collaborating in an arts project which defends our right to dissent, whilst looking to create a dialogue between the different parts that make up our modern political system here in Cuba, doesn’t corrupt my ethics at any point, in fact it puts my ethics in line with the civil engagement we should be practising today. [5]


[1] Taken from the precautionary measure document. June 13th 2016 Notified by Jose Leon Diaz, assistant director at Revolucion y Cultura magazine.

[2] Rescission of Contract Resolution No. 113 “Internal Supervision Procedure of the Ministry of Culture and its Support Unit” established on December 22nd 2015.

[3] Taken from the Rescission of Contract No.20/16 that I was given.

[4] Idem

[5] With that statement, I’d like to counteract one of the “For nows” that are expressed in the Rescission that states: “As the Revolucion y Cultura magazine is one of the Ministry of Culture’s bodies, and therefore a media channel which is governed by the ethical standards that Cuban governmental institutions dictate, such as in the Code of Conduct for Cuban journalists (UPEC, July 14th 2013), the attitude adopted by worker Yanelys Nunez Leyva, is completely out of line.”






One thought on “My New Work Situation

  • So file a wrongful termination lawsuit. Oh wait, we’re talking about Cuba.

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