Plan for a Global Industrial Union

The future is global unionism
23 September 2010

Union workers across the globe need to find new innovative ways of working together to match the increasing global power of multinational corporations, AWU
National Secretary, Paul Howes, said at a meeting in Germany this week.
” There is no doubt in my mind that the future is global unionism.
Unions must respond to the global marketplace
” We live in a global market. Our employers last century may have been home-town bosses – then the more successful
became state or national bosses.
“ But now in the 21st century increasingly across all employment sectors we face global employers, global bosses. Therefore
unions have to match this new reality with global unionism,” Paul Howes said.
“ When you consider the many global companies that we have in common with unions across the world – BlueScope, BHP
Billiton, Alcoa and Exxon for starters –in an era of global labour markets we must find ways of assisting each other, by
working together in campaigning or organising, bargaining and exchanges, so that workers rights will be strengthened.”
Union leaders from five continents meet to create powerful new global union organisation
Paul Howes, a member of the International Metalworkers Federation Executive Committee, is representing Asia-Pacific unions
at a conference aiming to create a new global union organisation representing 55 million manufacturing workers in more than
130 countries.
Union leaders from all five continents are at the conference to underline the role of manufacturing industry as the locomotive of
national economies, the general secretary of the International Metalworkers Federation, Mr Jyrki Raina said.
“ Industry is the backbone for the creation of good quality jobs with decent working conditions, proper training and skills
development, and respect of trade union and workers’ rights.
Australian unions must work on global stage
“ Sustainable industry jobs contribute to social development and better standards of living for citizens.
” Australia has a strong manufacturing and mining base, and Australian unions are an important part of our global union
family,” says IMF general secretary Jyrki Raina.
“ Their strong involvement in this strategic process to create a stronger counterpower to major multinational corporations is
crucial. “
Founding Congress to be held in 2012
The joint task force meeting in Germany aims to bring together three global trade union federations:
the International Metalworkers Federation (IMF);
the International Chemical, Energy and Mine Workers’ Federation (ICEM); and
the International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers’ Federation (ITGLWF) .
The new global union grouping plans to hold its founding congress in 2012.
The IMF represents 25 million workers in 100 countries, ICEM 20 million workers in 128 countries, and ITGLWF 10 million workers in 110 countries. The key areas of
action of the three organisations are trade union networks in multinational companies, trade union rights and campaigns, fighting against precarious work, climate change and
sustainable development, and building stronger unions in developing countries.
© 2010 Australian Workers’ Union
All electoral matter is authorised by Paul Howes, National Secretary
Email: members@awu.net.au
Level 10, 377-383 Sussex Street, Sydney | NSW 2000
Members Hotline: 1300 885 653
The Australian Workers Union: The future is global unionism http://www.awu.net.au/703421_5.html
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