Tuesday, April 12, 2011

The Council of the General Confederation of Trade Unions (GCTU) met in Moscow 8 April 2011 for a session involving representatives of the national trade union centres of Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan and Ukraine,  and the industrial Trade Union Internationals (TUIs).

The session heard the information on the work done by the GCTU Executive Committee since the previous session of the GCTU Council (April 2010–March 2011). The Council recommended that the GCTU affiliates, with due regard to the specific conditions in their respective country or industry, should promote decent work as the basis for development and modernisation strategies. Economic recovery measures should primarily concentrate on productive employment, creation of new and safe jobs, and adequate work remuneration, with equitable taxation.

Participants discussed the current economic and social situation in the CIS countries and trade union actions to help improve it. The reports on the issue were presented by the leaders of the GCTU-affiliated national trade union centres of Ukraine, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan and Russia, and several industrial Trade Union Internationals. The Council called on trade unions in the Commonwealth countries to rebuff resolutely employers’ attempts to solve their problems of development and competitiveness by freezing wages,  refusing workers social guarantees, liberalising labour law and using atypical employment, and to oppose the unjust stratification of society.

Upon considering the problem of youth work, the Council invited the CIS trade union centres and the industrial Trade Union Internationals to make wider use of the youth outreach experience gained by the GCTU affiliates in Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Ukraine, by the TUIs of health workers and metal workers, and by other member organisations. Trade unions intend to take an active part in the development of state policies in what concerns the improvement of legislation on the rights of youth.

The session heard a report on GCTU participation in the shaping of migration policies and in the protection of migrant workers. The Council also adopted the GCTU May Day Appeal, the Statement in Connection with 100th Session of the International Labour Conference, and the Appeal to the Participants in the Liquidation of the Chernobyl Disaster Consequences and to the People Living in Radioactive Contamination Areas to be issued in connection with the 25th anniversary of the Chernobyl catastrophe on the 26th of April 2011.