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Unions Aotearoa International Development Trust The international development agency of the New Zealand Council of Trade Unions UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


What is UnionAID? • Unions Aotearoa International Development Trust • Charitable Trust formed by CTU • Registered with Charities Commission • Trustees are Helen Kelly, Peter Conway & Ross Wilson • Foundation Members • Recognised by NZ AID UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


What does UnionAID do? • UnionAID Mission Statement – building solidarity and understanding between unions and workers in New Zealand and developing countries – supporting partnership programmes which promote and protect workers’ rights, collective action, democratic decision-making and community participation.

• Supporting real change UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Practical Help • • • • • •

Building unions and cooperatives Training for union delegates and members Health and safety training Leadership training for women Basic skills training Political organising skills

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Why should we help workers overseas? • 5 Key Reasons: – Solidarity with other workers – Struggling families like us – Globalisation affects us all – Basic human rights for workers – Effectiveness of partnership aid projects

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


International Union Solidarity • Union solidarity is a key union value • Providing funds for education and training work is a modern way of expressing that solidarity • Building union organisation internationally • Other union centres already do it eg APHEDA UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Struggling Families need a hand • Workers and their families in developing countries are real people like us • Our projects are helping some of the most vulnerable workers in the world • As neighbours in a relatively prosperous country don’t we have a responsibility to help? • Helping them build strong unions is the most effective help we can give. UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Globalisation • Reducing exploitation is a key factor in fairer trade and competition • Declaration of Philadelphia 1944: – No peace without social and political stability – No social and political stability without fairer wealth distribution – No fairer wealth distribution unless address inequality in employer employee relationship

• Protects jobs in NZ and reduces conflict UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Union rights are human rights • Helping workers exercise rights under ILO conventions: – Union organisation & collective bargaining – Forced labour – Child labour – Discrimination

• Who is going to help these workers if unionists in other countries don’t? • No other aid organisation in NZ has this focus. UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


This type of aid has been shown to be the most effective : • • • • • • •

Driven by the recipients of aid Determine their own priorities for action Ownership of projects Politicised and empowered A sense of dignity and worth The whole community is involved and benefits Changes are sustainable over time UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


UnionAID Projects: South India

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Tamil Nadu Labour Union South India

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


TNLU Project achievements Co-operatives • Production Co-operatives (e.g. Handloom Weavers -focus on production and marketing • Credit Unions and micro -banks • Labour Contract Co-operatives (e.g. Quarry workers) - contract tendering • Housing Cooperatives for women - increase assets and security for women UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


TNLU Project achievements • More than 60,000 recognised by government as “workers”. • More than 30,000 in unions • Pay increases for scavengers, brickmakers, thatch makers, cremations workers, loadmen.. • Access to health care entitlements • Access to schooling for kids (including bikes) • Legal test cases UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Cremation Workers

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Proud to be union!

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Thai-Burma Border

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


FTUB training and education

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


FTUB training and education

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Training women migrant workers

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


UnionAID Projects: Sri Lanka

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Giving hope for the future

UnionAID: Workers in New Zealand helping workers overseas


Unions Aotearoa International Development Trust

Supporting Real Change


UnionAID workshop powerpoint presentation