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Empowering young union leaders

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18 December, 2019More than 25 young leaders from Middle East and North African (MENA) countries met in Casablanca, Morocco, on 4-6 November to discuss how to promote youth issues in their unions and increase participation at national and regional levels. The meeting is part of a project aimed at empowering young trade union leaders in the region.

Young leaders from unions affiliated to Moroccan Confédération démocratique du travail (CDT) reported on the creation of a youth secretariat to increase youth work at the national level.

The national youth secretaries from Union marocaine du travail (UMT)  and CDT shared action plans and how their national centers work with youth.

A full day of training was devoted to violence and harassment in the workplace and the latest ILO Convention, 190. Traditionally, political and social participation of women is weak in the region, as women face various challenges, including social and family restrictions, unemployment, legal discrimination, violence and sexual harassment.

16 young leaders from UMT were awarded diplomas as they had successfully completed the educational programme in 2019. The graduates presented their plans on how to tackle gender-based violence, health and safety and union education.

The educational program is made up of four modules covering a range of trade union related topics, from labour basics and gender equality to organizing and campaigning, analyzing multinational companies' strategies, and how to achieve a future of work that provides decent and sustainable work opportunities for everyone.

The Electricity Union FNTE/UMT supported the capacity building programme by hosting some of the workshops in Morocco. 

The project Empowering Young MENA Trade Union Leaders project is supported by IndustriALL’s Swedish affiliates and Union to Union, and trains a group of around 20 union leaders from two different countries.

Last year, participants came from IndustriALL unions affiliated to CDT and UGTT (Tunisia), wheras this year participant were from unions affiliated to UMT and Iraqi affiliates.

However, this year the Iraqi affiliates were unable to attend the final two sessions due to the civil unrest in the country.