Resolution on: Conduct Research Exploring the Contributions Strong Trade Unions Make to Societies With Robust Human Rights

published 19 September 2019 updated 19 September 2019

The 8th World Congress of Education International, meeting in Bangkok in July 2019, noting that:

(1) Education International (EI) has strong engagement with a number of human rights issues in addition to trade union rights, including the right to education, gender and LGBT discrimination, migrant and refugees, indigenous people’s rights, and the brutal violation of human rights perpetrated by non-State actors, and terrorist attacks on students and teachers;

(2) EI cooperates with other global unions on a number of trade union rights’ issues and in individual countries where abuses are serious. (Such as, in recent years, Burma and Iran, and South Korea where there has been good cooperation with other global unions on human and trade union rights issues.);

(3) Globally, education unions are confronting increasing pressures and challenges that threaten to undermine trade union rights, including the right to collectively bargain and to engage in labour action. In some cases, trade union membership and density are also under attack. These global challenges occur within the broader context of domestic and international human rights commitments and regimes.

And further noting:(4) That trade union rights are human rights;

(5) The ILO/UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Status of Teachers, the international law regarding the rights and responsibilities of the teaching profession described by the late Norm Goble, former General Secretary of the Canadian Teachers’ Federation and of the World Confederation of Organizations of the Teaching Profession (WCOTP), as “a charter of immense significance;”

(6) The paucity of research regarding how trade union rights and human rights intersect at a country or state-level.

Recommends that:

(7) EI conduct research exploring the contributions strong trade unions make to societies with robust human rights, to better understand, and then promote, the correlation between strong trade unions and societies with robust human rights.