Issue date
07 Aug 2017
International Matters E-Bulletin
 
International Development Matters
 
Issue number 167 August 2017
 
IDM - Monthly newsletter reporting international development matters and issues affecting trade unionists around the world. Including reports, statements, interviews and events.

TUC NEWS

TUC denounces violations of ILO Conventions 87 and 98 at garment factories within the Haiti’s export processing zones

TUC Aid & TUUT: Human and trade union rights in Somalia

TUC General Secretary writes to Korean Ambassador to call for release of imprisoned KCTU President

OTHER INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Brazil Passes Extreme Anti-Worker Labour Law

1,600 Teachers Demand Iran’s Judiciary Free Imprisoned Rights Activist

Sri Lanka arrests oil workers as troops restore supplies

Migrant Workers in Southeast Asia Struggle for Justice

IFI NEWS

Ghana teacher trade union leader calls for end to IMF programme 

Trade unions and other civil society organisations worldwide call investors to cease support to Bridge International Academies

Robots are set to take Africa’s manufacturing jobs even before it has enough

Mozambique debt crisis tests IFIs' trust in private development finance

CALLS TO ACTION

ACT NOW! Haft Tapeh sugar workers in Iran are fighting for their wages, pensions and rights!

Cambodia: Support abandoned workers in their struggle for lost wages and benefits

ACT NOW! Indonesia: 4,220 striking miners fired

ACT NOW! Yemen: DNO must pay its workers

FOCUS ON TRADE UNIONISTS

Fundamental principles and rights at work: ILO interview with Sharan Burrow, ITUC General Secretary

Labour Migration: ILO interview with Toni Moore, BWU General Secretary

Equal Times Interview: “We must prevent Kenyan migrants from being slaves rather than workers” in the Gulf States

AFL-CIO Interview: National trade unions in a globalised world

EVENTS

CSC Fringe meeting at TUC Congress 2017

TUC NEWS

TUC denounces violations of ILO Conventions 87 and 98 at garment factories within the Haiti’s export processing zones

TUC General Secretary, Frances O'Grady has written to the owner of Sewing International SA (SISA) and the manager of Interamerican Wovens (IW) to denounce the violations of ILO Conventions 87 and 98 at the companies, which are both within the export processing zones of Haiti. Garment worker unions in Haiti have been striking since May for better wages and working conditions.

TUC Aid & TUUT: Human and trade union rights in Somalia

TUC Aid and the Trade Union Unit Trust (TUUT) have been supporting the Federation of Somali Trade Unions (FESTU) to produce a second annual review of human and trade union rights in Somalia covering developments in 2016. The report will record and analyse information of trade union rights violations to raise awareness of trade union rights abuses nationally and internationally and lobby for measures to address such abuses.

Read more here

TUC General Secretary writes to Korean Ambassador to call for release of imprisoned KCTU President

The TUC General Secretary has written to the Korean Ambassador to call for the immediate release of KCTU President Han Sung-gyun who is serving a three year prison term for peacefully demonstrating for workers' rights.

OTHER INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Brazil Passes Extreme Anti-Worker Labour Law

Brazil workers and their unions are outraged and are vowing further protests over a draconian labour law reform the Senate passed recently that will weaken labor regulations as well as restrict financing for unions. 

Read more here

1,600 Teachers Demand Iran’s Judiciary Free Imprisoned Rights Activist

More than one thousand Iranian teachers have issued a statement calling for the release of Mohsen Omrani, a teacher imprisoned for peacefully advocating for teachers’ rights in the southern port city of Bushehr.

Read more here

Sri Lanka arrests oil workers as troops restore supplies

Police in Sri Lanka recently arrested dozens of striking oil workers as the military moved in to restore supplies and end fuel shortages, officials said. CPC trade unions have said they will not return to work until the government abandons plans to sell stakes in oil storage tank facilities in the northeast and south of the island.

Read more here

Migrant Workers in Southeast Asia Struggle for Justice

Migrant workers continue to face major obstacles to lodging and resolving complaints, finds the ILO’s new study on migrant workers in Southeast Asia.

Read more here

IFI NEWS

Ghana teacher trade union leader calls for end to IMF programme 

General Secretary of the Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT), David Ofori Acheampong, has said if the Akufo-Addo-led government will be able to deal with the labour unrest in the country, then it will have to end Ghana’s three-year programme with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Read more here 

Trade unions and other civil society organisations worldwide call investors to cease support to Bridge International Academies

174 civil society organisations from around the world have released a statement calling on investors to cease support for Bridge International Academies (BIA) a company running over 500 commercial private schools in the Global South with the support of international donors and investors. Unions have previously reported on the poor quality of the education offered within schools in Kenya.

Robots are set to take Africa’s manufacturing jobs even before it has enough

Concerns have been expresses by unions in the retail and manufacturing sector across Africa about the impact of robots on the shop floor.

Read more here 

Mozambique debt crisis tests IFIs' trust in private development finance

Mozambique’s default on commercial loans worth US$2bn loans has triggered the latest - and arguably most shocking - African debt crisis in recent times. While nearly all African countries suffer from low commodity prices and rising credit costs, the Mozambican case is unusual in that it reveals how easily the new development finance paradigm, centred on private capital, can go wrong.

Read more here

CALLS TO ACTION

ACT NOW! Haft Tapeh sugar workers in Iran are fighting for their wages, pensions and rights!

Workers at the Haft Tapeh sugar cane plantation and mill complex in the southern Iranian city of Shush and their union are demanding full payment of wage and benefit arrears; recognition of the union as the workers' legal representative; and the company's return to government ownership.

Click here to show your support and send a message to the Iranian authorities.

Cambodia: Support abandoned workers in their struggle for lost wages and benefits

The sudden closure of a garment factory has left 208 workers in Cambodia without jobs, salaries, or their legally owed compensation. One year later these workers, mainly women, are still fighting for justice. The factory – Chung Fai Knitwear – was making clothing for Marks & Spencer (UK), Nygård (Canada) and Bonmarché (UK).

Please take a moment to support their struggle here

ACT NOW! Indonesia: 4,220 striking miners fired

Over 4,220 Indonesian workers have been fired for striking, and the Indonesian government must ensure the workers are reinstated. US company Freeport-McMoRan has fired 3,000 workers over the last month at the massive Grasberg copper and gold mine in West Papua. The firing violates the workers fundamental rights, the collective bargaining agreement and Indonesian law. 

Demand the government of Indonesia intervene to reverse the unjust dismissal of workers and ensure workers rights are respected. 

ACT NOW! Yemen: DNO must pay its workers

The Norwegian based oil company DNO has not paid its 175 workers in Yemen for 18 months. The company stopped its operations after the war broke out in Yemen in summer 2015 and terminated its employees via a simple SMS or email, showing neither respect to its workers who toiled for the company for over 10 years, nor to the local legislation obliging the company to follow a handover process and redundancy procedures upon its withdrawal.

Give your support to 175 Yemeni workers and their families by signing and sending the letter to DNO Executive Chairman Bijan Mossavar-Rahmani.

FOCUS ON TRADE UNIONISTS

Fundamental principles and rights at work: ILO interview with Sharan Burrow, ITUC General Secretary

Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), explains in this video how unions are addressing the challenges of the violations of the ILO Fundamental Principles and Rights at work.

Labour Migration: ILO interview with Toni Moore, BWU General Secretary

Toni Moore, General Secretary of the Barbados Workers Union (BWU), explains in this video how unions are addressing the challenges of fair recruitment, protection of migrant workers and labour market integration.

Equal Times Interview: “We must prevent Kenyan migrants from being slaves rather than workers” in the Gulf States

The kafala sponsorship system practiced throughout the Gulf is at the heart of the problem of the abuse and exploitation faced by migrant domestic workers. There have been reports of abuse and even deaths of Kenyan domestic workers at the hands of their employers in the Gulf.

Read the experiences of Kenyan migrant domestic workers in the Middle East here

AFL-CIO Interview: National trade unions in a globalised world

Read the interview with Cathy Feingold, director, AFL-CIO International Department talking about the challenges facing unions as they seek to address exploitation in global supply chains including transnational bargaining, corporate accountability, and a full revamp of the global labour architecture.

EVENTS

CSC Fringe meeting at TUC Congress 2017

Monday, 11 September 2017, 5:30pm

Meeting Room 1A, Brighton Centre

Cuba Solidarity Campaign TUC Congress 2017 Fringe Meeting in Brighton.

Trump, US intervention and blockade: Solidarity with Cuba and Venezuela!

TUC Congress credentials are needed to attend this fringe meeting.

H. E. Teresita Vicente, Cuban Ambassador
H. E. Rocio Maniero, Venezuelan Ambassador
Kevin Courtney, NUT General Secretary
Char: Diana Holland, Unite the Union Assistant General Secretary

Full details here

  The person responsible for the e-bulletin is:
Tanya Warlock
Tel 0207 467 1357
E: [email protected]

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