ITUC Statement to the Haiti United Nations International Donors’ Conference

In a statement to the United Nations International Donors’ Conference towards a New Future for Haiti, the ITUC has called for a major international aid mobilisation for the country’s devastated infrastructure and economy. Social protection, creation of decent work and respect for workers’ rights need to be at the top of the agenda in order for Haiti to move onto a new development path which generates wealth for its people and ensures a fair distribution of that wealth.

“Rebuilding and defining a new development model for Haiti is a huge task that will require sustained international support. Today, trade unions, particularly in Haiti, must be involved in it", said ITUC General Secretary Guy Ryder. "In the past, the country was characterised by a huge informal economy, severe poverty and hazardous and poorly paid work for much of the workforce in the formal economy. There is now an opportunity to change that for the better, and we are calling on the international institutions, donor governments and the Haitian government to provide decent economic opportunities for Haitians."

In a letter to several international institutions, the ITUC called on the international community to recognise that in areas where recovery and reconstruction are underway, special attention should be paid to decent work. Reconstruction efforts must operate on the basis of full respect for the Haitian Labour Code and ILO Conventions, particularly to urgently secure decent jobs for Haitians, social dialogue and the right to decent wages and social protection.

Following the devastating earthquake which hit the country on 12 January, trade unions around the world mobilised support on an unprecedented scale. Beyond the immediate humanitarian support, trade unions are also working on a draft “roadmap” for Haiti’s reconstruction. A special trade union summit on Haiti organised by the ITUC, its regional organisation for the Americas TUCA, and Global Union Federations PSI and EI will take place in the Dominican Republic capital Santo Domingo on 8 and 9 April.

To read the full ITUC Statement

The ITUC represents 176 million workers in 312 affiliated national organisations from 155 countries.

For more information please contact the ITUC Press Department on +32 2 224 0204 or +32 476 621 018.

Photo: caritas internationalis