Jump to main content
IndustriALL logotype

Global youth conference calls for inclusive union structures

21 June, 2023Delegates at IndustriALL’s global youth conference call for inclusive union structure, guaranteeing young unionists a voice in the future.

Forty young unionists from Africa, America, Asia, Europe and Middle East met in Cape Town on 19 June to emphasize that youth structures are needed at all levels; youth need to be part of decision-making bodies and should be integrated in all IndustriALL committees.

Youth is committed to build stronger unions through organizing, and to include everyone regardless of employment status, sexual orientation or gender identity. No one should be discriminated on the grounds of gender, race and social status.

Young workers must be involved in climate justice actions and advocacy for just transition. Young workers will be severely impacted as their generation will meet more extreme weather such as drought, floods, hurricane that may lead to social conflicts over basic living needs. Young leaders want unions to advocate for sustainable industrial policies and to create quality jobs for youth.

In the light of challenges faced by young workers, delegates adopted recommendations for transforming unions which they conveyed to IndustriALL’s executive committee meeting at the same time in Cape Town.

A draft youth policy to be adopted by IndustriALL was debabted. It contains four priority areas:

  • Increase youth representation through the creation of global and regional youth structures
  • Promote youth participation in IndustriALL activities and set a youth quota
  • Empower youth by providing upskilling programmes
  • Develop strategies to integrate youth issues into unions' everyday agenda

The conference set up a working group to develop a proposal for regional and global youth structures and to further work on the draft youth policy. The working group will consist of two youth representatives, one woman and one men, from each region.

“We need to be fully incorporated in IndustriALL’s structures and participate in decision-making processes. An appropriate budget is needed to implement activities in each region and resolve young workers’ issues,”

said Geoffrey Akedi, IndustriALL Sub-Saharan Africa youth committee chair.

“The structural change will take a long time; now it’s important to seek the support of the regional executive committees who should be given a mandate to bring up the matter in the global executive committee,"

said Christine Olivier, IndustriALL assistant general secretary.