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Progression of disability and equality rights in East Africa

TUC Aid project
Report type
Research and reports
Issue date
Project summary

Progression of disability and equality rights in East Africa

TUC Aid supported the development of various trade union disability policies, constitutional change, and workplace action in East African countries, including Ethiopia, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda.

Ethiopia, completed 2019

Budget: £10,800

Project outcomes

Disability Aid Abroad (DAA) and the Confederation of Ethiopian Trade Unions (CETU) worked together to deliver a programme of disability rights training and advocacy which consisted of:

  • training 82 members of CETU, and 110 members of CETU’s affiliates as Disability Champions.
  • embedding the Disability Champions programme into the constituent affiliated unions within CETU;
  • establishing a central Disability Committee consisting of members of individual affiliated unions;
  • inclusion of disability employment issues in Collective Bargaining Agreements with government and employer organisations; and
  • further developing cooperation between CETU and the ILO.

Tanzania – project outcomes

In Tanzania, the Disability Champion training materials developed in cooperation with trade unions was translated into Swahili, and 500 copies were formally presented to the Tanzania Union of Industrial and Commercial Workers (TUICO) annual conference in Dodoma, in May 2018. The training booklets were used to help train Disability Champions in the workplace in the East African Federation region.

Uganda – project outcomes

In Uganda, all the National Organisation of Trade Unions’ (NOTU) affiliated trade unions have established Disability Committees and there is a central Disability Committee made up of chairpersons from the individual disability committees. The chair of the central Disability Committee is an automatic member of NOTU's General Council. NOTU’s constitution has been amended to include disability as a standalone issue in the trade union.

Rwanda – project outcomes

In Rwanda, the Trade Union Centre of Workers of Rwanda (CESTRAR) continues to hold Disability Champions workshops and has included disabled trade union members in its Equality Committee. CESTRAR has formed a co-operative relationship with the Rwandan Human Rights Commission and was involved in writing the Commission's UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities submission on employment rights for disabled people. CESTRAR has focused more on training on the employment aspects of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

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