“This act is unprecedented. I don’t remember anything like this in the history of our country.” This is how the Secretary General of the UGT, Pepe Álvarez, described the statement he made on Thursday with his CC OO counterpart, Unai Sordo. In it, fifty trade union organizations from around the world demand a vote in the general elections Sunday for the political parties “that allow the re-establishment of a progressive government in Spain.” Spanish trade union leaders are accompanied by the European Union Confederation of Trade Unions (ETUC) General Secretary, Esther Lynch: “What happens in the elections in Spain will not only have an impact here, but throughout Europe. This government is one of the strongest progressive influences in the European Union.”
Sordo highlighted “how easily” CC OO and UGT achieved this support: “There is an international sensitivity in the trade union world about the danger posed by the anti-democratic onslaught of the far-right.” Alvarez added that the far right is knocking on the door and the unions want to close it. They are already present in many EU governments and knocking on other people’s doors.
Among the signatories of the manifesto are the German DGB, Britain’s TUC, CUT of Brazil and Colombia, CDT of Morocco, UGT of Tunisia, CFTUI of India or NTUC of Singapore, as well as trade unions such as EFFAT (World Federation of Food, Agriculture and Tourism Unions) IndustriALL (International Confederation of Industry), EFT (European Transport Confederation) or the Trade Union Advisory Committee of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (TUAC). The largest global support comes from the International Trade Union Confederation, which represents 187 million workers in 167 countries.
Not all of these union platforms are left-leaning, Sordo and Álvarez highlight. “Many are closer to Christian democracy or to a more permissive line, but we all share the concern about possible loss of rights,” said the CC OO leader, whose Madrid headquarters held the event.
In the statement, the signatory unions considered that the Spanish executive “has responded to serious challenges with policies based on social justice. In addition, they have shown that through social dialogue it is possible to promote economic growth and job creation, strengthen the welfare state, increase the rights of the working class and protect the environment.” Spanish trade unionists stated that they had never registered The number of workers so far (20.9 million)that the decline in temporary employment results from labor reform (is the lowest in the 21st century, 17%) and that the minimum wage has increased by 47% since 2018 (up to €1,080 gross per month in 14 payments).
“With these policies,” the statement continues, “Spain has not only established itself as a benchmark for progressive management in the face of serious crises. It has also committed itself to a more equitable world order, one of peace and progress, to fight global inequality […]. For all these reasons, we express concern about the real danger of setback posed by conservative policies for workers, for equality between women and men, for the rights of LGTBI people, for children, and for policies necessary for comprehensive responses to the effects of climate change, environmental transformation, education, universal and good public health, and sustainability. pension system or decent employment.
Alvarez answered on another plane On remarks made this Wednesday by Chief Executive Officer, Antonio Garamendi, where he opened the door to “amendments” in the work reform in the next legislature because, in his opinion, the Executive Director of Pedro Sánchez approved standards “outside” of social dialogue that “disrupted” the rule. The President of the General Federation of Workers said, “I thank you for these words, because in this way the workers will have a clearer idea of the path they must take.” [en las elecciones generales]. I thank him sarcastically, because Garamendi knew that the unions could have gone further in this reform and we did not to reach an agreement that would last.
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