IndustriALL makes progress on gender work in Latin America and the Caribbean

27.10.2017

“We want genuine change” was a sentence that was heard many times during the meeting of the working group on gender, in Bogota, Colombia, on 16-17 October.

Members of the Regional Women’s Committee, delegates from Colombia and observers drafted a work plan for presentation to IndustriALL Global Union structures.

Some key points of the plan are: the importance of researching the location of women in industry and the trade union movement; determining women’s aspirations; identifying the barriers that prevent women from enjoying equal opportunities; and occupying positions of responsibility in the national and regional trade union movement.

The roadmap also aspires to give a feminine face to the trade union movement, address issues of concern to women, take measures to facilitate the appointment of women to 40 per cent of IndustriALL Global Union executive committee posts at the next Congress in 2020; and promote solidarity and the exchange of ideas between women in the region.

Women members of IndustriALL-affiliated mining and energy unions in Colombia shared the preliminary results of research into gender and youth. The study used a research-action-participation methodology, with the aim of finding out why few women and young workers join unions, and to seek solutions to this problem.

The next step for the three unions will be to discuss the conclusions of the research with their executive committees and implement an action plan to overcome the obstacles that exist, and assure that the results of the research are used to formulate a gender and youth policy.

The research was conducted as part of IndustriALL’s trade union strengthening project, with the support of the Swedish unions IF Metall and Unionen. Three of the researchers talk here about the process (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d5PU4IfirRI).

“It was a very positive meeting that has created a lot of expectations. Now we all have to comply with the established objectives,” said Mónica Veloso, co-president of IndustriALL’s women’s committee:

As a result of the meeting, a Facebook group was created to share information on implementation of the gender action plan in the region.