“Why do we need Decent work?”
Sri Lanka (South Asia)
In order to mark the World Day for Decent work the Solidarity Center supported the organising of a Trade Union Dialogue Forum meeting on the topic “Why do we need Decent work?”. The public event sought to raise constructive awareness on the need to achieve decent work standards. Working conditions of various local employment sectors were subjected to discussion by union activists. The current trade union approach towards realising decent work was also critically examined. The failure to include genuine concerns of workers and their organisations in the Decent Work Country Agenda was a key issue subjected for discussion. Participants unanimously resolved that unions should actively contribute to the shaping of the Decent work country agenda and engage this issues as a priority. The need to raise overall awareness among the working class on the issue of decent work, with particular reference to practical workplace conditions was highlighted as an important area of focus that should be included in future union endeavours. It was also agreed, the message of decent work and its need should be shared among the overwhelming majority of workers who are not unionized and unions should explore modern advocacy tools such as social media, web sites, etc.. to reach out to these hitherto un engaged segment of workers and build a strong support base for the cause. Guest presenters from three unions namely the Union of Post and Telecommunication Officers’, Ceylon Electricity Board Technical Engineering Officers’ Union and Sri Lanka Broadcasting Technical Officers Union addressed the forum. The presentations were followed by an interactive dialogue.
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