International Development Matters - Issue 105 January 2012

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Playfair Brazil and Playfair 2012: joining forces in the UK to protect workers' rights

The Playfair Brazil, Playfair 2012 and international Play Fair campaigns came together in London from 12-14 December 2011, to exchange top tips and share lessons about how to ensure that the rights of workers delivering the Olympics and World Cup are protected for future games.

Read about their visit here

Adidas, Nike and Speedo: still lightweights on respecting workers' rights

Playfair 2012 and the international Play Fair campaign have maintained regular dialogue with Adidas, the official sportswear sponsor for London 2012; Nike and Pentland (makers of Speedo) on respecting workers' rights in their global supply chain. Read about what Adidas, Nike and Speedo say they are doing on respecting workers' rights - and Play Fair's response.

UNFCCC - Conference of the Parties in Durban 2011

The 17th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) took place in Durban, South Africa in early December. Read the daily diary accounts of the proceedings from TUC delegate, Philip Pearson, Senior TUC Policy officer of Climate change, energy and transport in the TUC's Economic & Social Affairs Department.

Austerity measures could undermine treatment, care and support for PLWHA in the UK, warns the TUC

Kay Carberry, TUC Assistant General Secretary, in her address to a seminar held in Congress House on the occasion of the World AIDS Day, (1 December) expressed serious concern over the impact of current austerity measures on the lives of people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) in the UK.

Read more about the seminar here

TUC condemns Military Regime in Fiji for refusing entry for international trade union delegation

The TUC, in a letter to the Fijian High Commissioner in London, has strongly condemned the Military Regime in Fiji for refusing entry for an international trade union delegation including the Presidents of the Australian Council of Trade Unions and the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions (NZCTU).


ITUC Domestic workers - 12 by 12 Campaign

ITUC 12 by 12

Join the ITUC's 12 by 12 Campaign for rights and protection for domestic workers.

Read about the 19 December worldwide action taken by domestic workers from 12 countries, demanding better rights including one day off a week and an eight-hour working day for the 53 million domestic workers worldwide.

Watch the video of the campaign launch online.

Honduras: Reporters Assassinated

The ITUC has joined with its Honduran affiliates, the CUTH, CTH and CGT, in firmly condemning the murder of the well-known journalist Luz Marina Paz Villalobos and her cameraman Delmer Canales. They were shot to death, riddled with bullets, by assassins travelling on two motorbikes.

Read more here

Tunisia: Concern over attempts to undermine UGTT

The ITUC has expressed concern over attacks on the Tunisian national trade union centre, UGTT, at a key juncture in the country's transition process.

Read more here

Kuwait: More Government Attacks on Workers' Rights


The ITUC has criticised the latest attack by the government of Kuwait against the rights of its own employees, following a statement by Justice Minister Ahmed Al Mulaifi that strikes are prohibited and that international conventions which guarantee workers' rights are not applicable to him.

ITUC Protests against Lengthy Prison Terms on Turkish Trade Unionists


The ITUC has joined Education International (EI) in its protest over the sentencing of 25 Turkish trade unionists to more than 6 years in prison under false 'terrorist' charges.

Read more here

Development for a Decent World - trade unions at the Busan Civil Society Forum


The trade union delegation, accounting for almost a tenth of all participants, has well marked their presence both during the forum and in the final declaration. Busan Civil Society Forum, uniting over 500 representatives of civil society organisations from all around the world, finished with the proclamation of the Civil Society Statement to the 4th High Level Forum on Aid Effectiveness.

Read more here

ICTU's Union Post December 2011

Click here for the December edition of The Union Post published by the Irish Congress of Trade Unions'.

RadioLabour latest news bulletin


Click here for RadioLabour's latest news programmes featuring stories of trade unionists around the world.


G20 Employment Task Force Kicks Off With '64 Million Jobs' Challenge to Prevent Double Dip Recession

The international union movement has warned the first meeting of the G20 Task Force on Employment in Mexico City that a failure to provide decent work for the millions of young people entering the global labour force each year over the next decade risks detonating a social time bomb.

Read more here

The Bretton Woods Project has published a new report on regulating financial flows

The Time for a New Consensus: Regulating financial flows for stability and development report explains the drawbacks, especially for development, of policies to deregulate the movement of money across borders. It also looks at the potential advantages of regulating flows, despite the assumption of international institutions such as the IMF and World Trade Organisation (WTO), as well as in the European Union and rich country governments, that this will be harmful.

UN report calls on affluent countries to halt austerity to avoid double-dip recession

UN report

The world risks falling back into recession if developed countries embark prematurely on fiscal austerity measures, according to a United Nations report recently released in New York, which recommends additional stimulus measures as well as more forceful international coordination to stimulate job creation and investment. Read the full article

Helping the poor by helping the rich


Most of the world's poorest people lack access to basic services such as clean water and electricity. The World Bank and the Group of 20 are now proposing a new strategy to scale up infrastructure investment in developing countries. Over the past two months, the powerful Group of 20, the World Bank and other development banks have produced three reports on how to tackle the infrastructure needs of the poor. (Unlike in the past, they have not consulted civil society - let alone poor people - on this challenge).

Read more here


ACT NOW! Ivory Coast union leader still held under harsh conditions

Basile Mahan Gahé

Basile Mahan Gahé, general secretary of the national trade union centre Dignité (whose food and hotel section is affiliated to the IUF) has been transferred from detention in Abidjan to a prison in Boundiali, where he is reportedly only given one meal a day. The trade union leader was kidnapped from his Abidjan home on April 26 and held without charges.

Click here to take action

URGENT ACTION! Nestlé Pakistan attempts to blackmail workers

Stop Nespressure

Management at Nestle's giant Kabirwala dairy factory in Pakistan is deepening its policy of punishing contract workers who demand their legal rights.

For more information and to take action, click here

Bahrain: Drop all charges against teachers, unionists and students

Education International (EI) calls on you to urge the Bahraini authorities to review the charges and convictions and commute sentences of all teachers, teacher unionists and students charged with offences related to exercise of freedom of speech and right to assemble.

You can learn more and send off your message here


Malaysia's migrant domestic workers enslaved to a system dependent on cheap foreign labour


The drive through Kuala Lumpur to the modest home where I would leave my bags for four days provided the first glimpse of life in the Malaysian capital. In little time it caught my attention that this city stands out from its regional neighbours.

Read the full story here

Interviews with Indonesian PT Kizone factory workers

In January, 2,800 workers sewing apparel for Adidas and NIKE at the PT Kizone factory in Indonesia were laid off after their factory shut down abruptly. Nearly half a year's wages were left unpaid, amounting to around $3.3 million in legally owed severance pay.

Read the Workers' testimonies here

ITUC spotlight interview with Pia Stalpaert (Belgium)

"We are carrying out valuable trade union work in silence"


In June 2011, Pia Stalpaert, president of CSC Alimentation et Services, the food and services union affiliated to the confederation of Christian trade unions of Belgium, took part in the discussions that led to the adoption of an ILO Convention on domestic work.

Read the full interview here


Haiti: Year Zero+2 fundraising and consciousness-raising event

12 January 2012
TUC, Congress House
4pm - 10pm
Tickets £10, (£5 unwaged)

On 12 January 2010, a massive earthquake struck the west coast of Haiti causing terrible death and destruction. A coalition of UK community and labour organisations including the TUC - acting on the basis of our ongoing commitment to people of Haiti, their self-determination, their human rights and well being - have organised an important fundraising and consciousness-raising event aimed at commemorating the second anniversary of the earthquake.

Useful websites

There are a number of websites with useful information for trade unionists, policy makers and campaigners. Details here: Useful websites

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