Solidarity Center
 
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The Solidarity Center's mission is to help build a global labor movement by strengthening the economic and political power of workers around the world through effective, independent and democratic unions.


Solidarity Center 2013 Annual Report
                                        
In 2013-2014, the Solidarity Center worked with allies in more than 60 countries to support workers through organizing, bargaining, advocating and building a collective voice. Find out more in the Solidarity Center 2013 Annual Report.





Solidarity Center Call for Proposals
Bangladesh Worker Rights Defense Fund

Bangladeshi union organizers are in peril and need your help. Please donate now to support them as they reach out to garment workers in unsafe factories. Find out more.

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Donate Now! West Africa Ebola Emergency Fund

Workers in West Africa are at high risk of contracting the deadly Ebola virus because many come in daily contact with the public in their jobs as nurses, market vendors or domestic employees. Women workers are especially vulnerable, as they are caregivers. Many workers and their families are suffering from the illness—or living in danger zones.

Ebola could strike as many as 1.4 million people in the next few months, according to U.S. health officials.

Your donation can help slow the spread of Ebola and save lives. 

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Your tax-deductible contribution to the West Africa Ebola Emergency Fund will assist Solidarity Center union allies in Liberia and Sierra Leone in providing workers with prevention education, material support and financial assistance. (Read more)


Court Orders Dominican Republic to Recognize Citizenship

October 23, 2014—The Inter-American Court for Human Rights ordered the Dominican Republic to reform all national laws blocking the recognition of citizenship for children of undocumented parents born in the country.

The decision, dated August 28, 2014, was made public on October 22, 2014, according to a story today in El Dia, a national newspaper in the Dominican Republic. The sentence orders the country to adopt the necessary measures to ensure no laws or rules deny Dominican nationality to children born in the country to undocumented parents who migrated there. 

The decision comes in a case in which 27 people were deported, five of them Haitian children residing in the Dominican Republic and 22 of whom were found to be Dominicans.


Your Donations to Ebola Fund Reach Thousands of Workers

October 23, 2014—Union members across Liberia have taken the lead in Ebola education and prevention among workers and their families, holding awareness trainings for thousands of workers and supplying them with hand-washing buckets and sanitization cleansers donated in part through the Solidarity Center West Africa Ebola Fund. (If you have not yet donated, please take a moment to donate now.)

At the Firestone Natural Rubber Plantation in Margibi County, where more than 11,000 full-time and precarious workers labor, and where 75,000 people live in 125 Firestone camps and in nearby communities, the Firestone Agricultural Workers Union (FAWUL) leaders and shop-stewards have so far reached 1,337 people in eight camps with protective equipment and information. FAWUL is a longtime Solidarity Center ally.


South Africa LGBTI Dialogue Raises Awareness among Unions

October 22, 2014—In Limpopo, a landlocked rural area in South Africa’s northernmost province, agriculture and mining are the primary industries, nearly 75 percent of residents fall below the country’s poverty line and many cling to long-held cultural and religious biases. In this difficult environment, workers who identify as LGBTI (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex) face frequent discrimination at the workplace, even though it is prohibited under the South African Constitution.

“Discrimination is bad—employers want us to dress a certain way, they want us to pretend to be what we are not,” said one young lesbian member of the Limpopo LGBTI group, Proudly Out. “I am seen as a demon.”


New Index Rates Quality, Quantity of Jobs Worldwide

October 20, 2014—A new data-driven online index launched by JustJobs Network, a nonpartisan global policy and research institute, highlights the need for sustainable employment and offers policymakers and other decision-makers worldwide a tool to help generate more and better jobs worldwide.

Created in partnership with Fafo, an independent and multidisciplinary research foundation, the JustJobs Index offers the first-ever index to measure both quantity and quality of jobs. The site includes two indexes with country-by-country data trends between 2000 and 2013.
 


U.S. Delegation to Honduras: ‘Overwhelmed’ by Rights Violations

October 17, 2014—In a recent Solidarity Center delegation to Honduras, Metropolitan Washington, D.C., Labor Council President Josyln Williams, a Solidarity Center Executive Board member, and Rep. George Miller (D-Calif.), the leading Democratic member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, examined firsthand how union and human rights activists are struggling to defend the rights of working Hondurans and ensure the basic livelihoods and survival of Honduran families.

The Solidarity Center delegation intersected with a parallel delegation of AFL-CIO leaders, including AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre, a Solidarity Center board member, and Larry Cohen, Communications Workers of America president. Both groups met with Solidarity Center partner unions and numerous worker and human rights activists.


Kailash Satyarthi, Solidarity Center Ally, Wins Nobel

October 10, 2014—Labor and human rights activist and long-time Solidarity Center ally Kailash Satyarthi won the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize, the Nobel committee announced this morning. He shares the prestigious award with Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani girl who survived a brutal 2012 Taliban attack for her stance on girls’ education.

As a grassroots activist, Satyarthi has led the rescue of more than 78,500 child laborers and survived numerous attacks on his life as a result. As a PBS profile describes Satyarthi’s work: “His original idea was daring and dangerous. He decided to mount raids on factories—factories frequently manned by armed guards—where children and often entire families were held captive as bonded workers.”


Building & Wood Workers Win Meany-Kirkland Award
October 10, 2014—The Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI) and its affiliates received the 2014 AFL-CIO George Meany-Lane Kirkland Human Rights Award in a ceremony last night in Washington, D.C., where they were honored for their work in bringing justice to construction workers worldwide, specifically for the migrant workers whose labor makes global sporting events possible.

“Your leadership has been tireless, and your campaign has shed light on the dangerous and exploitive working conditions of migrant workers,” said AFL-CIO Executive Vice President Tefere Gebre as he presented the award to BWI General Secretary Ambet Yuson.

Swaziland Bans Unions
 

October 9, 2014—Swaziland has ordered all worker and employer federations to stop operations immediately, a demand issued yesterday in a resolution by the government cabinet. The order effectively disbands the Trade Union Confederation of Swaziland (TUCOSWA), a Solidarity Center ally.

Minister of Labor and Social Security Winnie Magagula, quoted in the Times of Swaziland, said that in the wake of the resolution, “all federations are non-existent in terms of the Industrial Relations Act and should stop operating immediately until the amendment of the Industrial Relations Act has been passed by Parliament.”

The move runs counter to international labor standards, including the right of freedom of association.

“This is a blatant and outrageous attack on the ability of working people to form associations of their choice and stand up for their rights,” said Solidarity Center Executive Director Shawna Bader-Blau. “By denying workers a voice at work, the Swazi government is preventing workers from achieving safe and healthy workplaces and wages that will support themselves andtheir families.”

 
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