(Brussels, 24 April 2015) International Workers’ Memorial Day is held on 28 April. This year we commemorate the thousands of workers that have died from accidents and occupational diseases at work. Toxic exposure at the workplace is the spotlight this year. EPSU is particularly concerned that the European Commission has failed to promote occupational cancer prevention measures. The carcinogens agents Directive, the main instrument for protection of workers from the risks related to exposure (...)
(14 April) It is with deep sadness that we have learned Monday morning 13 April that Hans Engelberts has passed away after a long sickness. Hans Engelberts was General Secretary of the Public Services International from 1981 to 2007. Our thoughts go to his family, his children and grandchildren and his friends in this moment of sorrow and loss.
Having started his trade union career in the predecessor of AbvaKabo in the Netherlands, Hans dedicated his life to the PSI. He has contributed (...)
On this day we will remember those workers which have died from occupational diseases or an accident at work.
This year the focus will be on addressing exposure to hazardous substances. Many public service workers are exposed to such substances like waste workers, firefighters or workers in laboratories but not only. In the EU we demand progress with measures to deal with carcinogenic substances and enforceable exposure limits for 50 of the most toxic chemicals for cancer and for fertility (...)
(7 April) The union leaders of the public service trade unions concluded that a series of proposed trade agreements between the European Union and other countries are harmful for democracy and workers, their families and communities. They took this position following an introduction by the EPSU General Secretary and interventions from several colleagues. Union leaders have been trying to convince their governments or political parties to be more open and transparent, to be clearer on (...)
(30 March 2015) Changing Europe’s economic policy is the priority confirmed the leaders of the North East European constituency. The union leaders demonstrated with examples the effects of the neo-liberal and corporate driven austerity policies. Cuts in public spending, outsourcing and privatisation as well as pay freezes and job cuts are undermining the quality of the services and are intentionally commercialising public services. It is not the needs of the people but the desire to make (...)
(16 March 2015) Public service trade union leaders from South East Europe discussed the ongoing impact on public services, workers and communities of the economic crisis and failure of governments to address it. Rising unemployment and increased inequality are some of the consequences. Keenly aware that we need to increase our strength, the union leaders also addressed organising and recruitment. Some positive examples were highlighted. The group also sent a message of support to striking (...)
(9 March 2015) With reform of the health care systems in all countries, there is a growing influence of the private sector especially in Russia. Most of the clinics and activities are minor but there are larger chains in Russia. Unions considered the challenges of organising these private sector workers and the methods to do so also leading to an active membership and preventing the local union branches become instruments of management.
Other issues discussed:
The increase in (...)
(9 December 2014) Public Services International and the International Trade Union Confederation are urgently calling for letters of protest to be sent to the Peruvian Minister of Labour in support of Luis Isarra, the general secretary of Federation of Unions of Water Workers of Peru (FENTAP). Luis’s permanent union leave has been revoked by the Peruvian Government just before the United Nations Climate Change conference (COP20) which is due to open in Lima this month. Luis is responsible for (...)
(28 January 2015) The European Commission answered EPSU sharing our concerns and those of ETUC over the violence and atrocities committed by ISIS. For a detailed response please see letter:
(23 October 2014) EPSU is very concerned about the terror of the so-called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant that affects all working men and women in Syria and Iraq and leads to many refugees seeking safety in Turkey and other countries in the region. EPSU’s affiliates unions including the (...)
(25 August 2014) The Palestinian public service unions have written to PSI detailing the scale of the destruction and loss of human life in Gaza. PSI has issued a call for solidarity in response. "According to the Gaza public sector unions’ report, hospitals and ambulances have been targeted, killing dozens of rescuers and medical workers and endangering anyone providing relief and humanitarian aid to civilians. The report further lists considerable damage to mosques, police and security (...)