TUC Aid and Playfair 2012 at Tolpuddle Martyr's Festival 2010
Playing fair at Tolpuddle
On a beautifully sunny weekend, the Playfair 2012 campaign attracted huge interest from the thousands of festival goers at Tolpuddle from 16-18 July 2010.
Photo: Christine Blower, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers attempts to hoopla some workers' rights!
The workers' rights hoopla game was a hit, drawing in adults and children alike to 'win' rights for workers making sportswear and Olympic branded goods for London 2012. The game was a fun way of illustrating more serious issues around the need to raise the bar on workers' rights in global supply chains. The 'worker's rights hoopla' featured labour standards such as freedom to join a union, living wage, no child labour and job security, which are part of the Ethical Trading Initiative base code. The 'no child labour' standard proved to be the most popular target for children who played the game.
Photo: Billy Bragg supports the Playfair 2012 campaign
While the Organisers of the London Games now require their suppliers to comply with these standards, a decision taken following discussions with representatives from Playfair 2012, we still need to keep up the pressure to ensure that the base code is implemented down supply chains so that working conditions are good in practice as well as theory.
Photos: Festival goers sign up to the campaign
The spotlight was also on the sportswear industry. Over 280 people took action and signed a petition to the CEOs of Adidas, Nike and Pentland (makers of Speedo) calling on them to pay workers employed in their supply chains a living wage, respect their right to join & form a union, provide job security and not force workers to work over time. Hundreds of people took away Playfair 2012 leaflets, posters and stickers - to share with others and put up in their workplaces. To find out more about the campaign and how you can get involved visit: www.playfair2012.org
Photos: Julia Neal, former President of the ATL, Colin Mosses Chair, POA and Hugh Lanning Deputy General Secretary PCS support the Playfair 2012 campaign.
Photos: Alex Gordon President of the RMT backs Playfair as do marchers from UCU and UNISON.
Solidarity with trade unionists around the world
International solidarity featured heavily at the festival, with a global solidarity session in the main marquee, several stalls and a speaker on the main stage after the march, not to mention the countless poets and songwriters who featured international concerns in their performances.
TUC aid was also fundraising for the multi-country appeal at the festival. TUC Aid is a trade union charity for working people in need throughout the world. Through TUC Aid, trade unions are helping to end poverty, ill health and oppression in developing countries around the world. TUC Aid has a long, proud history of supporting real change for working people and in 2010-11 is fundraising to support trade unions in Burma, Palestine and Zimbabwe. The situation for workers and trade unionists in these countries is challenging and dangerous. As such it was an honour to hostGift Muti, Deputy General Secretary of the General Agricultural Plantation Workers Union, Zimbabwe as a guest at Tolpuddle. Through speaking on stage and on a panel debate Gift educated festival goers about the situation for farm workers and trade unionists in Zimbabwe and the need for global solidarity.
John Drake FBU chaired the international session and started off the event by speaking about the situation for people in Palestine and the need for trade union solidarity. Gift Muti told the audience how the land reform act had impacted on the both domestic and migrant workers. Yesimi llesanmi National Youth Officer for the Nigeria Labour Congress and currently working at the NUT, also spoke and called on trade unionists all over the world to take a stand against corruption and the siphoning off of natural resources, the profits of which never get down to the people. Yesimi also highlighted the Playfair campaign and the ongoing exploitation of workers in supply chains. Gemma Tumelty from the TUC spoke about the TUC's global solidarity work through TUC Aid and international development.
Photos: Gift Muti and Yesimi llesanmi speaking during the global solidarity session
(photos by Clint Randall of Pixel Photography)
Photo: Gift Muti speaking on stage (photo by Clint Randall of Pixel Photography)
Sharon Sukhram and Gemma Tumelty
Issued: 22 July, 2010