Ei-iE

Peter Marshall / Demotix Images
Peter Marshall / Demotix Images

Trade union rights are human rights

Trade unionists are far too often subject to attacks by repressive governments. Every year, many are subjected to violence, arrest and imprisonment, torture and even murder. Trade union leaders in education are targeted by non-democratic governments who seek total control of education, and deny teachers and education support personnel their rights.

Even in democratic countries, many education workers are denied the right to join unions and/or engage in collective bargaining. Where bargaining exists, limits on its scope can be imposed. Moreover, teachers and education support personnel are denied the right to strike.

Education International also supports the right of students to organise and join the fight for more inclusive and democratic communities.

Working closely with our member organisations, other global unions and human rights networks, we use supervisory mechanisms at the national, regional and global levels to ensure rights and standards are respected and social dialogue is effective.

Solidarity actions among our global membership are a powerful tool to advance rights everywhere.

Our work in this area

  1. News 3 August 2021

    Education International expresses solidarity with Hong Kong education union and academic freedom worldwide

    Education International strongly condemns the Hong Kong government for cutting ties with the Hong Kong Professional Teachers’ Union (HKPTU), the city’s largest teachers’ union with around 95,000 members and representing 90 per cent of the city’s educators. EI also denounces severe violations of academic freedom and a systematic attack on...

    Education International expresses solidarity with Hong Kong education union and academic freedom worldwide
  2. News 2 August 2021

    Rwanda: SYPERWA stands by teachers during the crisis

    Rwandan education workers’ union SYPERWA organised a tour to meet teachers from private schools and help them solve the problems encountered. Thanks to Education International’s COVID-19 solidarity fund, the union has been able to map the issues for teachers affected by COVID-19, provide legal assistance to teachers suspended as a...

    Rwanda: SYPERWA stands by teachers during the crisis
  3. News 28 July 2021

    Belarus: Education International calls for an end to crackdown on democratic forces

    Education International is calling for an end to the repression against students, workers, activists, and others who are fighting for democracy in Belarus and facing a nationwide crackdown. A series of repressive actions in recent weeks, from the arbitrary arrests of activists to the illegal raids on NGO’s, have raised...

    Belarus: Education International calls for an end to crackdown on democratic forces
  4. News 19 July 2021

    Philippines: Education unionists targeted by Duterte regime in escalating human rights violations

    The Second Report of the Independent International Commission of Investigation into Human Rights Violations in the Philippines (Investigate PH) was released this month. The report documents intensifying human rights violations perpetrated by state agents, in line with President Rodrigo Duterte’s security policies and violent statements that have been adopted as...

    Philippines: Education unionists targeted by Duterte regime in escalating human rights violations
  5. News 15 July 2021

    Chad: the SET supporting teachers during the COVID-19 crisis

    Throughout the crisis, the Chad Teachers Union (SET, Syndicat des Enseignants du Tchad) has focused on listening to and supporting teachers. To this aim, the union carried out a large-scale survey to better understand the impact of the pandemic on teachers and to assess the effectiveness of distance learning.

    Chad: the SET supporting teachers during the COVID-19 crisis
  6. News 12 July 2021

    Educators in the Arab countries ready to rebuild education systems despite challenges

    The COVID-19 pandemic has caused massive loss of human life and an unprecedented challenge to public health, education systems and the economy in the Arab region. Education unions remain committed to quality education, advocating for their students and members and rebuilding with equity.

    Educators in the Arab countries ready to rebuild education systems despite challenges
  7. News 9 July 2021

    Arab educators and their unions ready to rebuild education and shape the future of their work

    The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in the education sector, the future of work, climate change action, the protection of human and trade union rights, and safeguarding democracy were at the heart of discussions during the 5th Conference of Education International's Arab Countries Cross-Regional Structure (ACCRS).

    Arab educators and their unions ready to rebuild education and shape the future of their work
  8. Statements 7 July 2021

    Eswatini: Education International calls for democracy, freedom of association and respect for human rights

    Education International, the global federation representing 32.5 million teachers and education support personnel in 178 countries, including Eswatini, is seriously concerned about the deteriorating human rights situation in the country, which has resulted in hundreds of deaths, abductions, and disappearances.

    Eswatini: Education International calls for democracy, freedom of association and respect for human rights
  9. News 7 July 2021

    Iraq: Social dialogue leads to a roadmap for quality education

    During their meeting with the Education Minister of the Iraqi region of Kurdistan, leaders the Kurdistan Teachers’ Union (KTU) were able to address several crucial educational issues. This led to the elaboration of a roadmap aiming to improve the educational system.

    Iraq: Social dialogue leads to a roadmap for quality education
  10. Opinion 1 July 2021

    An online union academy made in the Democratic Republic of Congo

    Jacques Taty Mwakupemba, Augustin Tumba Nzuji

    The Online Union Academy [Académie Syndicale en Ligne, ASL] project set up by the Congo National Federation of Teachers and Social Educators (FENECO/UNTC) is part of the capacity-building activities of unions working in the education sector in the Democratic Republic of Congo (Primary, Secondary and Technical Education; Higher and University...

    An online union academy made in the Democratic Republic of Congo
  11. Statements 25 June 2021

    Convention 190 can change lives | Joint statement of the Global Union Federations and the International Trade Union Confederation

    The adoption of International Labour Organization (ILO)Convention 190 andRecommendation 206 on Violence and Harassment in the world of work is a victory for the trade union and labour movement. The adoption of these instruments is the culmination of years of campaigning and lobbying by trade unions, and in particular women...

    Convention 190 can change lives | Joint statement of the Global Union Federations and the International Trade Union Confederation
  12. Publications

    Training of Trainers Toolkit on the ILO Violence And Harassment Convention (No. 190) and Recommendation (No. 206)

    25 June 2021

    The historical adoption of the ILO Violence and Harassment Convention 190 (C190) and Recommendation 206 (R206) in 2019 by the International Labour Conference has created a new momentum in the fight against violence and harassment – including gender-based violence and harassment - in the world of work.

    Training of Trainers Toolkit on the ILO Violence And Harassment Convention (No. 190) and Recommendation (No. 206)
    1. Facilitator Guide
    2. Activity Workbook
    3. Kolaylaştirici rehberi
    4. Etkinlik çalişma kitabi
    5. دليل المرشد
    6. كتاب الأنشطة
  13. News 25 June 2021

    Global trade union movement launches toolkit in campaign to eradicate violence and harassment in the world of work

    As the International Labour Organization Convention 190 on violence and harassment in the world of work comes into force on 25 June 2021, global unions launchtoolkit to support the Convention and its Recommendation 206 . The manual provides thousands of unions around the world with critical tools in the fight...

    Global trade union movement launches toolkit in campaign to eradicate violence and harassment in the world of work
  14. News 6 May 2021

    Colombia: Global education movement condemns abuses of basic human rights

    Education International and its affiliates around the globe are deeply concerned about the brutal repression of protests in Colombia. The global trade union federation demands democratic governance of the country and urges public authorities to put a halt to human rights abuses.

    Colombia: Global education movement condemns abuses of basic human rights