IndustriALL Global Union affiliates have been participating in the massive World Social Forum currently bringing together 20,000 activists from 120 countries, in Salvador, Brazil from 13 to 17 March.
The World Social Forum began with a march by hundreds of activists from all over the world through the centre of Salvador, capital of the state of Bahia. Among them, were representatives of IndustriALL trade union affiliates from Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, France, Spain, Switzerland and the United States (among others).
Under the slogan "To resist is to create, to resist is to transform", the forum invited participants to debate and define new strategies to confront the neoliberalism, coup d’états and genocides that several countries are currently facing.
At a workshop entitled called "Transformations in the world of work and union responses" organized by CUT Brazil on 14 March, participants discussed how automization and digitalization of the economy are causing unprecedented changes in the world of work, posing a challenge to trade union organizations and society as a whole.
Speaking at the workshop, IndustriALL’s general secretary, Valter Sanches, said:
"The future of work is already happening. Half of the world’s wealth is concentrated in the hands of eight men. Almost all are owners of the biggest technology multinationals such as Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft, Bloomberg.
"To face Industry 4.0 we need to have strong unions and work together, concentrating on three points: organization, union training and collective bargaining. We will work together to create sustainable industrial strategies and policies," he said.
Today, March 15, a World Assembly in Defense of Democracies will be held at 5:00 p.m. (local time) at the Pituaçu Stadium. The event is expected to include the presence of the former presidents of Argentina, Cristina Fernández of Brazil, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff, of Uruguay, José Mujica and the ex-president of Paraguay, Fernando Lugo.
On 16 March there will be a World Assembly of Women, a meeting aimed at discussing issues such as the criminalization of abortion, feminicide and violence against women.
On the same day, the forum will hold the World Assembly of Peoples, Movements and Territories in Resistance hosted by indigenous peoples.