UNICARE Conference comes to a close after successful two day meeting
The first ever UNICARE World Meeting drew to a close after a highly successful and inspiring two day event in Buenos Aires with 109 people attending from 29 countries. The first UNICARE Global Steering Committee was elected with Carlos West Ocampo, General Secretary of Argentine federation FATSA, as President, and Frédéric Favraud of French affiliate FEC-FO elected as vice-President, along with a team of care sector leaders from around the world.
Passionate speeches and presentations were given on the domestic and global care systems by union leaders hailing from all over the world, with speakers coming from SEIU in the USA, Care union NCCU from Japan, United Voice from Australia, CCOO from Spain, FISASCAT from Italy, SNTSSSTE from Mexico, and more from Chile, Korea, Colombia and beyond. The two day meeting reinforced that the local challenges and struggles of care workers are echoed in every country, underlining the need for strong international trade union links, coordination on our strategies, and solidarity.
The meeting was honoured by the presence of the Argentine Minister of Labour, Carlos Tomada during the opening ceremony, who expressed his support and solidarity for UNICARE, and spoke about the need for strong trade unions in creating the societies everyone deserves. On the second day, the meeting was privileged to visit and be greeted by union delegates at the Fundacion Favoloro Hospital which was founded by renowned Argentine cardiac surgeon René Favoloro.
The meeting was also visited by local trade union leader and ILO committee representative Gerardo Martinez.
Following an emotional tribute to the victims of the devastating earthquake in Nepal by Prithivi Thapaliya, General Secretary of UNIPHIN Nepal, and one of the many health workers who have been tirelessly delivering medical support and care since the devastating earthquakes struck his city. UNICARE affiliates were glad Prithivi could attend despite the suffering in his community, and united to send a message of solidarity and support to all those affected. Union representatives unfurled a banner displaying the message “Solidarity with Nepal” and invited people to donate to help provide medical treatment for the injured, temporary tents and housing and water and food supplies. UNI is currently working with Union Aid Abroad-APHEDA, to support UNI affiliates in Nepal in their emergency relief efforts. To donate, please visit www.uniglobalnepal.org
Affiliates also offered a big show of solidarity by backing workers all over the Americas region fighting for human rights at multinational security company Prosegur. All around the world, workers are uniting to denounce the reprehensible conduct of the Spanish security giant.