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RESOLUTION OF PARTICIPANTS AT THE 51H ASIA/PACIFIC SEMINAR OF BUILDING AND BUILDING MATERIALS UNIONS, FEBRUARY 24, 2007, MANILA

This meeting of unions from the Asia/Pacific region consisting of delegates from India, Mauritius, Bangladesh, Vietnam, China, Japan, Philippines, New Zealand and Australia having met in Manila from 23-25 February, 2007 resolves as follows:

1. We believe that the momentum built up through our series of regional meetings of construction and construction related unions in the Asia/Pacific region has been valuable for our work as trade unionists and that the process should continue;

2. We ask that the UITBB leadership work to establish a 6th meeting of this seminar process and that the meeting should take place within a 12-18 month time frame. We suggest that discussions take place with unions in a range of countries including China, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Pakistan and New Zealand in order to establish a host country for our next meeting;

3. Our meeting in Manila has had a special focus on the issue of labour migration (as decided by our Tokyo meeting) and it is important that we continue our work around this key issue; We resolve to take the following practical steps to assist migrant workers who are being abused and exploited:

a) We will seek to organize a day of protest in key cities throughout the Asia/Pacific region to draw attention to the problems faced by migrant workers particularly guest workers, in the construction industry in our region. These protests should be coordinated to take place at the same time before the end of 2007. The UITBB office should frame a list of demands that can be submitted to governments on the day of our protest;

b) Having established that the level of knowledge gained by migrant workers of their rights before they commence work in a host country has an important bearing on the possibility of exploitation occurring, we resolve to departure processes that are followed in the sending countries of our region. We resolve to write to the ILO and seek funding to expedite the necessary research;

C) We commit ourselves to strengthening bilateral ties between the unions of the region so that when instances of exploitation of migrant workers are discovered in a receiving country the union seeking to address the issue can rapidly communicate with kindred unions from the sending country, seeking information and assistance;

d) We resolve that we as individual unions and the UlTBB should continue to press this issue with the ILO believing that much more has to be done to implement the well meaning but non-binding provisions of the ILO Multi-lateral Framework on Labour Migration that was adopted in 2005;

e) We resolve to press Governments of the region who have not ratified the two ILO conventions on labour migration to do so along with the provisions of the Multi-lateral Framework as a matter of urgency;
f We resolve to press governments who have ratified the ILO instruments but do not respect them in practice;

g) We resolve to share information with each other and the UITBB head office so that we will continue to gather knowledge on this issue;
h) We ask that the issue of migrant labour feature prominently on the agenda of our next meeting.

4. We call upon the UITBB to putlish a special edition of the UITBB Bulletin dealing with our 5th Asia/Pacific Seminar in Manila;

5. We call upon the UITBB to place the papers presented at this seminar on the UITBB website as a matter of urgency;

6. As a group of construction and construction related unions we resolve to give special emphasis in our day to day work to the critical safety and occupational diseases issues discussed at this meeting. We resolve to campaign vigorously around the asbestos issue, and the causes of other prevalent diseases for construction workers such as silicosis, pneumoconiosis and the like;

7. We ask the UITBB to forward a copy of our final resolution of the 5th seminar together with the papers presented to ACTRAV at the ILO;

8. We place on record our gratitude and thanks to TUPAS and the many Comrades from TUPAS who have helped make our stay in the Philippines enjoyable and our seminar rewarding.

We so decide.

BRIEF NOTE ON INTERNATIONAL TRADE UNION CONFERENCE. OF WORKING
WOMEN HELP AT BRUSSELS


INTERNATIONAL TRADE UNION CONFERPNCE OF WORKING WOMEN organised by the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) was held in Brussels, Belgium from September 13th to 14th 2007 and was Atended by 95 delegates from 62 countries representing 80 Trade Union Organisations.

The venue of the conference was 'European Parliament'. Corn. Malathy Chi ttibabu on behalf of CWFI, Com.K.Hemaiatha on 'behalf of CETU and Corn. M.Girija on behalf of AIIEA participated in the Conference from India.

WFTU did not expect 95 women delegates from 62 countries would participate in the Conference. They anticipated delegates from just around 40 countries.
This shows that throughout the world, excepting in come countries like China, Vietnam, Cuba, Venezuela in all other countries, the working women are facing lot of problems; and-if some forum k ready to discuss the issues, then there is a good response. Participants from all the countries took part in discussion and exchanged the situation of working women in their respective countries and regions; though there had been some progress, many problems still remain un-resolved and there were many obstacles and gaps in terms of 'Gender Equality !

WFTU's Secretary General Corn. GEORGE MAVRIKOS in his inaugural speech explained about the position of women in each historical epoch in the primitive
communal system, in the slave-owning system, in the feudal system, in the capitalist system. In the socialist societies that were constructed during eh 20th century laid the basis, through the socialization of the means of production for the promotion of women's equality. Women attained full rights in the employment, in maternity, in education, in housing, in sports, in health, in politics. When we discuss about the 'female issue' we speak.of the additional emploitation and the oppression that women edure from society as result of their gender. The social and gender discriminations have mental, cultural and moral repercussions, since women are prevented from developing their abilities full and from attaining full equality. These negaltive repel-cussions concern the women of the working class, of the poor peasantry, of the self-employed strata, while the women of the bourgeoisie find the means and the possibilities to solve these problems.

FUTURE TASKS:
• Secietaria!s for working women will be formed in all trade-unions. They will plan activities. They will coordinate struggles.
• The conclusions and the demands of the ( nterence would be sent to all the
international organizations and governments.
• During 2008, conferences of working women would be held in every continent.
• Women's secretai wits of the WFTU would be formed in each continent.

CLEANTHIS CLEANTHOUS, Head of the European Regional Office of WFTU, greeted the conference

Extracts from the presentations of the Delegates:

CHINA : To protect the rights of women, China have brought labour laws; equal rights; social status of women is improved; role of women is important in the work place.

AFGHANISTAN : Work is not recognized - no job security - un--emploved, women are pushed to labour market. Trade Union Movement should fight for the rights of working women.
women.

GREECE : Exploitation of Women and children - struggles were developed - un-equal payment for the same jobs.

CYPRUS : Thousands of working women in labour market - because of unemployment - poverty - cheap labour.

CANAY ISLANDS : Women are isolated -- women are converted as migrant workers. Our trade union must be feminist. We must be bettel united.

IRELAND : daily basis work is available. No permanent job. We may be politically different. But we have common points. We must work for our interest. We must face all the barriers. We have to organize internationally. We have to strengthen working groups.

GALICIA: Labour realations are worse ! RUSSIA: Rights of women are violated !

SOUTH AFRICA : Africa, Latin America struggles are important. United front must be
formed. Organization should be strengthened. Struggles of Belgium, Brazil, Vietnam and also in India are to be appreciated.

SWEDEN . Large scale privatization is taking place !

VIETNAM . Working women forum formed. Gender equality is there; family burdens are shared.

POLAND : Social, economic, cultural problems prevail. Temporary jobs are only
available.

VENEZUELA : Law against violence against women' have been brought. Progress had been Made through struggles. House-wives are getting pension. Minimum wages are ensured (Hid the salaries are rising.

AMBASSADOR OF VENEZUELA : We have to change our language while addressing "gender equality" !,

ILO : Globalization ‘weakens the working class. Capacity of the trade union to be
increased.

FRANCE : In the name of capitalism there are many problems. We must stand against the discrimination.

SERBIA : women need social protection. Discrimination between men and women
prevails. This has to be considered by collective bargaining. Vocational trailing needed. Committee for Social Equality is there.

GERMANY: The working-women are in the street. They have been suppressed. Retired age has become 67. men an women are facing equal miseries. Men have no permanent job. 2.6 million Children are un-healthy. Social relief organizations collect the food and gives to children.

GREECE Women should fight for women ! social responsibilities to be taken !
SPAIN : Trade union movement is there in the big companies. Women are treaded like objects. Women need trade unions and trade unions need women !

RUSSIA : Merciless exploitation. They are not allowed to go to toilets even. Women workers are exploited !

My presentation on behalf of CWFI (speech already cent to you by e-mail) was appreciated and well received by the delegates !

Corns. Hemalatha and Girija also made their presentations on behalf of CITU and AIIEA. Finally a Declaration was adopted by the Conference.

Important points in the Declaration:
• To organize working women's Conference at Regional and National levels
Regularly, to provide women with a space to raise their concerns and for Trade Unions to adopt concrete policies, actions and results on gender equality !

• We address a call to all women militants of the world to act jointly with men inside trade Unions. 'To resist the capitalist globalization, imperialist wars, to destruction of environment. To demand tradeunion and democratic freedoms !

• We address a call to strengthen all together the WFTU in the new course which started in its 15th Congress in Havana, Cuba. The world working class needs a
class oriented trade union movement, demo ratic, militant and modern, independent from transnationals and capital.

Dear Comade,
First time initiatives taken by the WFTU in organizing this kind of Working Women Conference in international level needs appreciations. Cuba and Greece only have contributed funds for the conductance of the Conference!

Communist MP's of Greece taken efforts for conducting the conference in European
Parliament. Sufferings of Working Women are almost same all over the world. Wrath of imperialist dictums are same all over the world.

Delegates from South Africa, Sudan, Russia, Germany, Sylvia, Afghanistan, Vietnam, Cuba, China cordially interacted with our team from India.

With regards,
Malathy Chittibabu.



 

 
 
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