WSF 2007: unions out in force to demand decent work

The World Social Forum, an international gathering for exchanging views on globalisation and human and workers’ rights, draws thousands of participants every year.

This year it is being held in Africa for the first time, in Nairobi, Kenya. The opening of the Forum, yesterday, saw the launch of the global campaign “Decent work for a decent life”, which is being organised by an alliance consisting of the ITUC, Social Alert, the GPF, Solidar and the ETUC. The campaign is aimed at placing decent work at the centre of national and international social, economic, development, financial and trade policies. For the alliance, the notion of decent work comprises a fair job, adequate pay, social protection, trade union rights and non-discrimination.

“Decent work is a priority for everyone and one of the key factors for getting us out of the current situation”, stated Guy Ryder, the General Secretary of the ITUC, attending the launch of the campaign. “International trade and economic growth must be linked to that notion”, he added.

The launching of the campaign was followed by the traditional World Trade Union Forum, bringing together trade union organisations from all over the world. The Forum had a special note this year, since it was organised by the newly-formed International Trade Union Confederation, founded in Vienna in November 2006. The Forum demonstrated that the unions were more united than ever and prepared to meet the challenge of obtaining decent work. The unions again brought large numbers to the Forum and are undoubtedly key players in the struggle for a fairer form of globalisation.

Requests for interviews and other requests for information should be made to Mathieu Debroux, ITUC Press Officer, who can be reached on the following mobile phone number: +32 (0) 476 62 10 18 In Kenya the alternative phone number is: + 254 (0) 725 618 773 [email protected]

Founded on November 1 2006, the ITUC represents 168 million workers in 153 countries and territories and has 304 national affiliates.

For more information, contact the ITUC Press Department on +32 2 224 0204 or mobile phone +32 477 580 486

Photo: Skasuga