Public Service Day – 23 June – Celebration, Action, Resistance

Public service day EPSU 23June 2020

23 June is a day of celebration. Every year the work of public service workers for the community is celebrated on this day. With the ongoing pandemic, we thank public service workers for keeping our societies going during a very difficult period. They often worked with great risk for themselves and their families as personal protective equipment and the necessary safety protocols were lacking. The pandemic has shown how vital  our work is for our communities.

It is a day of action. Unions underline and support the demands of the millions of public service workers for higher pay and better wages. Public service workers want stronger bargaining and trade union rights as good work deserves good collective agreements. Many deliver services to the public at low pay and in precarious situations, mostly women, like in child, elderly and home care. It is a day of action to demand more funding and investment in public services as the pandemic has shown that our public services are underfunded and understaffed. Strengthening our public services needs to be a core part of any strategy to relaunch our economies, create jobs, and build societies with more equality in which people can enjoin their human rights. The recovery plans of European countries can be used to realise the Sustainable Development Goals and in the European Union implement the Pillar of Social Rights. We want a Green and Social Deal based on a reinforced role for public services with Just Transitions so no one is left behind. Tax justice so the rich, the wealthy and multinational corporations pay their fair share of taxes and to make sure our tax systems are progressive is a central part of our demands.

This is a day of resistance. We oppose the policies of austerity that brought misery after the financial, economic and social crisis of 2008 and 2009. The pandemic has shown how we pay the price for the cuts in public spending especially in health and care. We stand up against the commercialization and privatization of our public services and affirm the role of the public sector. Public service workers reject discrimination and racism.

On this Public Service Day we are together for a Fair, Social, Green and Democratic Europe.

The video is available in many languages on EPSU YouTube channel