Trade Unions in more than 100 Countries to mobilise to transform the world economy, on October 7, World Day for Decent Work

Trade unions in more than 100 countries, from Fiji across the globe to Alaska, are mobilising today to demand change in the world economy, as the financial crisis threatens the livelihoods of millions upon millions of people worldwide.

Working people have had enough of policies which have delivered vast wealth to a tiny few who have profited from lax or non-existent regulation of financial markets, while those who actually produce the goods and services of the real economy have seen their wages stagnate or fall. The ITUC’s Founding Congress in 2006 launched the call for this world day of action, to demand a fundamental transformation of globalisation, ending the policies of free market neo-liberalism which have brought us to the very edge of a catastrophic global recession. The time for that change is now”, said ITUC General Secretary Guy Ryder.

The day will start with a gathering of young trade unionists in Fiji, following which rallies, demonstrations, educational, cultural and media events will be taking place in more than 500 cities, towns and villages across the planet, ending as the eastern-most activity of the day comes to a close in Alaska.

Live internet coverage of the activities around the world, including videos, photographs and messages from events in every continent, is being broadcast on the special website for the World Day for Decent Work Union organizations from 115 countries have pre-registered their October 7 activities on the website, and these will be updated via a 24-hour live feed. The events include large-scale national mobilizations in several countries involving public rallies and workplace meetings, demonstrations in front of national parliaments, concerts, trade union member-to-member contacts in person and by phone and email, seminars involving trade unionists, academics and politicians and high visibility public events in city squares and other venues.

Events organized by young trade unionists will feature prominently in a number of countries, and women trade unionists in every continent will be stepping up their “Decent Work – Decent Life for Women” campaign, which focuses on major concerns to women and men at work, including pay equity and maternity rights amongst other issues. These and other national actions are linked to the three main themes for the World Day: Rights at Work; Solidarity; and Ending Poverty and Inequality. A number of the national actions will focus on international solidarity with trade unionists facing severe repression in countries such as Burma, Colombia, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.

“Workers around the world will be speaking with a united voice on this first ever mobilization of its type, protesting against the results of more than two decades of deregulation: growing insecurity, huge inequality and a downward spiral of global competition which puts profits before people’s fundamental rights. We aim to make this day a catalyst for real change”, said Ryder.

To follow in detail the World Day for Decent Work, see the live global broadcast at:

To see the special October 7 videos, see:

To find out what the ITUC’s Global Unions Partners are doing on October 7, see: