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 17 June 2022

    Afghanistan: International solidarity to face human and education rights violations

    International solidarity was reaffirmed at a webinar on Protecting the Right to Education of Girls in Afghanistan organised by the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and Unite the Union. Participants took stock of the educational and trade union situation in the country.

    Afghanistan: International solidarity to face human and education rights violations
  2. News 9 June 2022

    Afghanistan: Union ensures the distribution of allowances to unpaid teachers

    The National Teachers Elected Council (NTEC) has played a key role in ensuring that UNICEF’s badly needed emergency funds reach teachers across Afghanistan and advocating for secondary girls access to education be reinstated.

    Afghanistan: Union ensures the distribution of allowances to unpaid teachers
  3. Statements 1 June 2022

    Afghanistan: The Taliban regime must stop its attacks on the teaching profession

    Education International condemns the abusive measures imposed by the Taliban government on universities and higher education institutions in Afghanistan. These measures are in clear violation of the principles of academic freedom and institutional autonomy, as enshrined in the 1997 UNESCO Recommendation concerning the status of higher education teaching personnel .

    Afghanistan: The Taliban regime must stop its attacks on the teaching profession
  4. News 25 May 2022

    Afghanistan: As the Taliban regime undermines education, peace and human rights, Education International and its member organisations step up their actions

    Education International’s Afghanistan Teachers’ Rights Observatory (ATRO), to be launched in September 2022, is the latest in a series of strong actions undertaken demonstrating the global education community’s solidarity with Afghan educators and populations, who are undergoing great hardship under the rule of the Taliban.

    Afghanistan: As the Taliban regime undermines education, peace and human rights, Education International and its member organisations step up their actions
  5. News 3 May 2022

    Afghanistan: reaffirming strong support for exiled trade unionists and for the return of democracy, freedom and equality

    Together with French affiliates and leaders of French national and international trade union confederations, Education International took stock of the catastrophic situation of democracy and education in Afghanistan under Taliban rule. It also reiterated its commitment to and solidarity with Afghan trade unionists who, despite being exiled in France, are...

    Afghanistan: reaffirming strong support for exiled trade unionists and for the return of democracy, freedom and equality
  6. 27 April 2022

    Haiti: Seeds of international solidarity bear fruit

    Education International is pleased to report that it has received letters from member organisations in Haiti informing it that the repression against union leaders has been lifted, following a strong show of solidarity from education unions around the world.

    Haiti: Seeds of international solidarity bear fruit
  7. News 1 April 2022

    Jordan: The harassment against union leaders and members must stop immediately

    Education International has strongly reiterated its condemnation of the acts of harassment against the Jordanian Teachers’ Association (JTA), its leaders and members. It deplores the criminalisation of legitimate trade union activities including marches and demonstrations.

    Jordan: The harassment against union leaders and members must stop immediately
  8. News 27 March 2022

    Uruguay: Unions say yes to public education

    Education International in full solidarity with its affiliates

    Against all the odds, trade union organisations and grassroots movements in Uruguay secured a referendum in the country to overturn a series of government-imposed measures set to undermine public education and encourage privatisation.

    Uruguay: Unions say yes to public education
  9. News 21 March 2022

    Senegal: Unions win pay rise

    At a high-level meeting with several ministers, the leaders of Senegal's principal education unions reached agreement on several positive measures, namely a pay rise for education and training staff and the upgrading of the allowance system for managerial and administrative roles. The career prospects for education and teaching staff were...

    Senegal: Unions win pay rise
  10. News 14 March 2022

    Cameroon: The government must respect the unions as partners in social dialogue

    Faced with the rise of anarchic and disorganised teacher protest movements on social networks, Cameroon's education unions are stressing the urgency of holding social dialogue in good faith. They have asked the public authorities to respond as quickly as possible to the many teacher demands and to keep their promises.

    Cameroon: The government must respect the unions as partners in social dialogue
  11. News 23 February 2022

    Mauritania: teachers strike for a decent life and better working conditions

    A coalition of Mauritanian education unions called for a strike from 21-25 February. The widely supported action aimed at “wresting the rights” of teachers from the Minister of Education and underlined the unity of teachers.

    Mauritania: teachers strike for a decent life and better working conditions
  12. News 22 February 2022

    Iraq: Union presents a plan to develop higher education and research

    The Kurdistan Teachers' Union (KTU) and the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research held a joint meeting aiming at taking stock of the situation of higher education in this Iraqi region as well as developing it.

    Iraq: Union presents a plan to develop higher education and research
  13. News 3 February 2022

    China: Winter Olympics must not overshadow the fight for human rights

    Ahead of the 2022 Winter Olympics starting on 4 February in Beijing, China, Education International joins the international trade union movement’s call for human and trade union rights.

    China: Winter Olympics must not overshadow the fight for human rights
  14. News 19 January 2022

    Romania: Education unions mobilise for decent living and working conditions

    The Fédération des Syndicats Libres de l'Enseignement (FSLE) and the Fédération des syndicats de l’éducation Spiru Haret, both Romanian affiliates of Education International, organised a warning strike on 19 January. They are demanding decent wages and working conditions for education workers.

    Romania: Education unions mobilise for decent living and working conditions