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First regional statutory meetings since Congress

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10 March, 2022On 14 and 16 February, IndustriALL Asia Pacific regional women’s committee and executive committee met virtually, in the first regional meeting since IndustriALL’s new leadership was elected in September last year. 

The women’s committee discussed the new terms of reference (ToR), adopted at the global women’s committee meeting in December last year. Outgoing co-chair Eva Arcos, highlighted the priority areas for the coming years:

  • gender equality in reducing the pay gap
  • eliminating and preventing violence and harassment
  • decent work for women, including gender-responsive health and safety policies and human rights
  • improving maternity protection

Titular members, substitute members and observers participated in a rich discussion on the ToR for the gender equality taskforce. Jenny Kruschel from Australia and Kalpona Akter from Bangladesh were elected as the new co-chairs of the regional women’s committee.

Meeting participants and committee members expressed solidarity with workers and members of IndustriALL affiliate Confederation of Industrial Labour of Thailand (CILT), who were fired without notice in March 2021 as the factory, supplier to lingerie giant Victoria Secret, suddenly closed. Workers have yet to receive salary and severance pay.

Committee members reported on activities undertaken in the region during last year.

“Women has to be a part of work place transformation, as well as the conversation around the future of work. Women cannot be left behind in the transformation. There’s also a need for creating second-level leadership, especially of young leaders, who can carry our ideas forward,”

said IndustriALL assistant general secretary Christine Olivier.

Day 2 of meetings
IndustriALL vice president and regional co-chair Akira Takakura opened the Asia Pacific executive committee meeting by congratulating the new leadership.

IndustriALL general secretary Atle Høie and Kemal Özkan, assistant general secretary, participated in the meeting. Kemal Özkan outlined the action plan for 2022.

Apoorva Kaiwar and Shinya Iwai, regional secretaries for South Asia and South-East Asia respectively, presented the strategic plan for the region this year.

Khaing Zar, president of Burmese union IWFM, highlighted the current situation in Myanmar. Participants reinforced the continued message of solidarity to unions and the working people of Myanmar.

Jenny Kruschel and Kalpona Akter presented a brief overview of the women’s meeting. Other members of the Executive Committee gave short report of the activities undertaken in the region.

“We want to make IndustriALL Global Union more democratic and build a strong union,”

said Kemal Özkan.