At the UNI World Congress in Liverpool, Ruben Cortina was unanimously elected as the President of UNI Global Union.
Despite a challenging upbringing, Cortina rose through the Argentinian trade union ranks to become the Regional President of UNI Americas in 2003 and was instrumental in developing successful trade union organising across Latin America.
UNI’s outgoing President, Ann Selin, praised Cortina’s steadfast dedication and hard work in developing trade unionism, first, in the Argentinian commerce sector and subsequently throughout the Americas in a career spanning over thirty years. “As UNI Global President for the past four years, I am delighted to pass the Presidency in such good and capable hands,” Selin concluded.
Cortina addressed the Congress with a strong call for strategic trade union action for future generations.
“Diagnosing issues is fine, but it is useless without action for change. If we want to leave behind uncertainty, we have to do it with a planned vision. We do not have the luxury of sitting and waiting for politicians to act.”
“We will be at the door of every multinational and in every corner of the platform economy. We will be next to children to make sure they do not work, next to working women to close the pay gap and next to the youth to give them future opportunities. We will go to every corner that we are needed, no matter the distance. We’re here to serve the twenty million sisters and brothers around the world.”
“We will fight for integration and equality. Nobody will build social justice for us – we will have to build it together!”
Cortina thanked his family for their support and the Argentinian Federation of Commerce and Services Workers (FAECyS), the UNI Americas team, UNI Global Union and the wider trade union network for their solidarity and for “making it happen”.
During the Congress, UNI Global Union’s Regional Vice-Presidents, Auditors (and their substitutes) were also elected.