Thursday, December 25, 2008

WFTU Holds Int'l Seminar on Globalization & Workers' Rights; Rejects EU 65 Hour Work Week

Painting by Pablo Picasso on the occasion of 10th anniversary of WFTU in 1955

WFTU calls for an international day of struggle
18 December 2008

The World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) held an "International Seminar on Globalization and workers' rights" in Lisbon on December 15 and 16, 2008.The seminar was jointly organized with FESAHT - Federation of Agriculture, Food, Beverage, Hotels and Tourism of Portugal, FEVICCOM - Portuguese Trade Union Federation of Construction Ceramics and Glass Workers and SNTSF - National Union of Railway Workers. All these structures affiliated to the CGTP-IN.

The seminar was attended by 150 trade union leaders from 24 countries on the five continents, including dozens of trade union structures of the CGTP-IN.

The participants in this initiative analyzed the current international context and discussed and approved several lines of action to address the neoliberal globalization and the current crisis and to defend the rights and interests of workers.

The trade unionists approved a resolution on the revision of the directive on working time, which is currently being discussed at the European Parliament. The resolution demands that the members of the European Parliament reject the proposed revision of the directive, which profoundly affects the fundamental rights of workers and that, if approved, would impose a total liberalization and deregulation of working hours, causing a deep social deterioration.

Participants at the International Seminar also adopted a trade union declaration, which reflects the priority lines of action and guidelines for the development of joint actions and mobilizations at national, regional or branch level in the world, to defend and promote the rights of workers.

In this context, the WFTU announced that it will promote on April 1 2009, an "International Day of struggle for workers rights against exploitation." This global action received the unanimous support of all participants, who committed themselves to organize on that day initiatives in their respective countries, particularly in enterprises and workplaces.

[See WFTU Website for photos from Conference]