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Unison
UNISON International Relations Newsletter
#3 2020 Edition
UNISON International Relations Newsletter
The UNISON International Relations Newsletter provides updates on UNISON’s international work, reports on international matters affecting workers and trade unionists, and keeps BIROs informed of related developments, publications of reports and briefing documents, as well as upcoming nationwide events relevant to the union’s international work.

Webinar: Dying to Save Lives 2

Purchasing Power: Putting Workers’ Rights at the Heart of Public Procurement

UNISON International webinar

12:00-13:15
Friday, 27 November 2020

To register for the webinar, click here.

COVID-19 has shone a spotlight on how hundreds of thousands of workers are severely exploited, enslaved even, to make our PPE and other essential work tools. When the COVID-19 pandemic broke, there was a rush to find personal protective equipment (PPE) for key workers and laptops for home working.

But in the urgency to stay safe, nobody stopped to question who was making the PPE, and whether they were safe too. Join us for the second in a series of three webinars.

Through examining the purchasing cycle and two new UNISON reports, we will discuss the regulatory environment surrounding public sector procurement and how well it enables workers’ rights to be respected through public procurement, what needs changing and why. 

Speakers:

  • Olga Martinez Ortega, Professor in International Law specialising in public procurement and human rights, University of Greenwich
  • Mike Kilner, Senior Category Manager, University of London Universities Purchasing Consortium
  • Ben Van Pepperstrate, Business and Human Rights Expert
  • Chair: Angela Roberts, Vice Chair, UNISON NEC International Committee
To register for the webinar, click here.
A recording of the first session in this webinar series can be found on UNISON International’s webinar channel, here.

Palestine Solidarity Campaign: National Day of Action for Palestine and Virtual Lobby of Parliament

National Day of Action – Saturday 28 November

Find out more and how you can take part on social media:
www.palestinecampaign.org/events/national-day-of-action-for-palestine-endapartheid-sanctionsnow/

Palestine Solidarity Campaign: Virtual Lobby of Parliament – 10:00-17:00, Monday 2 December

Meet your MP online to discuss Palestinian rights. Register now: www.palestinecampaign.org/events/virtual-lobby-day-2020/

Webinar: Workers’ Rights in Palestine

UNISON International webinar

13:00-14:30
Wednesday, 9 December 2020

To register for the webinar, click here.

 

COVID-19 has shone a spotlight on how hundreds of thousands of workers are severely exploited, enslaved even, to make our PPE and other essential work tools. When the COVID-19 pandemic broke, there was a rush to find personal protective equipment (PPE) for key workers and laptops for home working. Palestinian workers’ rights have been denied by the occupation for over half a century, but coronavirus and the threat of annexation is making the situation significantly worse. Hear from UNISON’s partners in Palestine and Israel about the denial of Palestinian workers’ rights and how they organising and defending workers in the most challenging circumstances.

Speakers:

  • Hassan Barghouti, Democracy and Workers’ Rights Centre, Palestine
  • Riya Al’sanah, Who Profits
  • Assaf Adiv, Workers’ Advice Centre (WAC-MAAN)
  • Chair: Margaret McKee, chair, UNISON NEC International Committee
To register for the webinar, click here.

Pride in Procurement

Pride events agitate for LGBT+ rights and liberation in the UK and abroad. Yet the stories of those who make Pride merchandise are often unseen and unheard.

UNISON has worked with Labour Behind the Label (see the separate ‘UNISON’s International Affiliates’ section of this newsletter for more details) to help activists planning Pride events source merchandise from suppliers that align with their values.

Our helpful guide gives a brief background on worker and LGBT+ protection in global supply chains, and questions whether brands releasing Pride collections show true solidarity or just want to capture the so-called ‘pink pound’.

To read the report, click here.

For more information and advice from UNISON on planning, organising and making the most of Pride events, visit the union’s dedicated web page.

UNISON International’s Affiliates: Labour Behind the Label
Labour Behind the Label (LBL) campaigns for improved working conditions and implementation of workers’ rights in the garment industry in the Global South.

For many years UNISON has worked with LBL on funding garment workers’ rights projects in Bangladesh, campaigning against unsafe working conditions and suppression of unions in workplaces manufacturing school uniforms, and helping LGBT+ activist members to plan Pride events by raising awareness of ethical concerns in the global supply chains of companies manufacturing Pride merchandise.

UNISON is encouraging all branches to affiliate to LBL and support their vital work. For the small cost of affiliation you will receive information on campaigns, regular resource packs and the opportunity to invite speakers to attend your branch meetings.

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