International Days for workers, Wroclow

Verdi's group for workers (ArbeiterInnen) met with Polish, Austrian and French colleagues in Wroclaw, Poland, 16-17 October 2005. Workers discussed how to resist neo-liberal politics and achieve a more Social Europe. One of the main topics that preoccupied the trade union meeting was the Services Directive. Rejection was unanimous, and forceful. Erhard Ott, member of the Verdi Executive, warned “The proposed directive leads to social dumping and is an attack on public services. We will fight it”.

EPSU Deputy General Secretary spoke on the EPSU campaign to reject and change the directive, as well as on social dialogue and collective bargaining as tools to work for more justice, equality and redistribution. “Our tools become more important now European governments refrain from building Social Europe through legislation. To be effective we will have to confront unwilling employers”. Raising minimum wages and reducing the numbers of workers on low pay is an important goal of Europe's public service unions. Others speakers were Kurt Martin, Verdi Executive, who commemorated the 25th anniversary of Solidarnosc and the contribution it made to free and democratic trade unionism in Europe, Sven Gigold of Attac and Elisabeth Schroedter of the Greens in the European Parliament.