Ann Selin pays tribute to the spirit of Liverpool at UNI World Congress Opening Ceremony


Ann Selin pays tribute to the spirit of Liverpool at UNI World Congress Opening Ceremony

At the 5th UNI Global World Congress in Liverpool, World President of UNI Global Union Ann Selin paid tribute to the spirit and history of Liverpool as a trade union city. To an arena packed with over 2500 trade union leaders from around the world, Selin said, “Liverpool’s history as a strong and proud trade union city sets the perfect tone for our conference. Just across the street from us, the Beatles Story Museum have just signed a union recognition agreement – perhaps our presence helped!”

Selin called for UNI affiliates from Africa, Asia and the Pacific, the Americas and Europe to show unity and stand up to the challenges facing workers everywhere. “We face many challenges – the digital revolution, global warming, growing inequality and the widening gap in the distribution of wealth. Workers deserve better and we are making it happen.”

Urging a renewed focus on international solidarity, Selin said, “When businesses were local, unions were local. When businesses became national, unions became national. Now, when more and more businesses are global, we – the unions – must think internationally in everything we do. An injury to one is an injury to all.”

“We must be at the forefront of the fight against poverty, the fight for justice, equality, decent jobs and fair pay – the fight for basic human rights. Above all we fight for peace, for people to get the opportunity to live a decent, meaningful life and have the dignity they deserve in their work.”

“Ecological sustainability should be a priority – we must save the world for our children. There are no jobs on a dead planet. Ecological sustainability is fundamental, but so is social sustainability. Work is the foundation of our societies and trade unions must stand up for decency and respect for all.”

“We take inspiration from this great city – we have the spirit of Liverpool. We are bold, we are defiant, we are brave and we are different.”

Quoting Mandela, Selin ended her speech with a rousing message, “It always seems impossible until it’s done.  Let us dream big here in Liverpool – we can be a beacon of hope and inspiration for workers everywhere. We are Making It Happen.”

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