#16Days – UNI unions rising together against gender-based violence


#16Days – UNI unions rising together against gender-based violence

The 25th of November is the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, and a key date for UNI Global Union affiliates around the world as we rise together for the start of 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, ending on 10 December, Human Rights Day.

Gender-based violence is aggression or hostility stemming from factual or perceived sex, gender, sexual orientation or gender identity. It is a serious violation of human rights and can be a life-threatening health and protection issue.

This year, our 16 days campaign goes back to basics to understand gender-based violence in all its forms. We highlight the actions UNI trade unions are taking to help workers protect themselves and their colleagues. UNI affiliates are invited to use download the social media took kit and content with plenty of material to cover the 16 days.

Veronica Fernandez Mendez, UNI’s Head of Equal Opportunities said:

“Everyone has a role in preventing gender-based violence. We need to fight the inequalities and the social and cultural norms that give rise to it and build power in our unions and among our workers to become advocates for change. Women’s rights are trade union rights and as such we must fight to protect them from all forms of violence and harassment.”

Trade unions have an obligation to protect workers from all forms of violence and harassment, including gender-based violence. They do this by negotiating agreements with employers to create safe workplaces, supporting victims, advocating for special leave allowances, lobbying for the adoption of legal instruments that aim at eradicating violence and harassment and standing side by side with workers throughout.

ILO Convention 190 to eliminate violence and harassment in the world of work, supported by Recommendation 206, are vital tools for trade unions to implement policies that root out and safeguard workers from gender-based violence. The Convention has been ratified by 35 countries so far and our affiliates are pushing for more countries to sign, including UNI trade unions in Colombia.

Elsewhere UNI is including the C190 principles and 206 recommendations in its global agreements with multinational companies to eliminate violence and harassment, such as with French banking group Credit Agricole.

UNI unions are also including principles from the Convention in their own collective agreements, such as at Carrefour in Uganda.

As we embark on16 days of activism against gender-based violence, don’t forget to share your actions with us by tagging @uniglobalunion on social media and using the hashtag #16Days.