The 6th UNI Asia & Pacific Youth (UNI Apro) Conference was successfully held on 13-14 September, with more than 100 youth from across the region participating enthusiastically in the two-day online conference. With the world now transiting to a post-pandemic scenario marked by global social and economic upheavals, the conference brought UNI Apro youths together at this crucial juncture to adopt a new Youth Action Plan for 2022-2026 (YAP) to confront the uncertain future.
The high level of spirited involvement reflected well on the conference theme: #MakingYOUthMatter, which aimed to highlight how young people can engage and contribute positively to trade union affairs at the national and global levels. The discussions mirrored the key YAP elements of Rebuilding Youth, Organizing Youth, Social Movement Unionism, Diversity, Youth Inclusion and Participation, and Skills and Training, which were enlivened by speakers drawn from active past and present members of the UNI Apro Youth Committee and network. The Youth Conference broadly endorsed the commitments to:
In his solidarity remarks, UNI Asia and Pacific Regional Secretary Rajendra Acharya praised the UNI Apro Youths for their commitment and indispensable role in the trade union movement. He said,
“UNI Apro stands with the growing number of young workers all over the region holding their union’s flag, organizing for improved working conditions, and demanding their rights. Young workers play a part in rejuvenating the union movement with their fresh perspective on organizing for justice, decent jobs, stopping precarious work, climate change, and mental health. UNI Apro wants to support the growth of young worker leaders. We will step up by having more intense training for young unionists amongst our affiliates, focusing on preparing and developing a line of leadership.”
The 6th UNI Apro Youth Conference confirmed a new committee led by Bernadette Cabodil (Philippines), re-elected as the President, and newly elected Shigemi Yamashita (Japan), Shirlene Lawes (Australia), and Kimaya Ukidave (India) as Vice-Presidents.