Many workers involved in the delivery of public services such as health and social care, municipal services and public administration, among others, are facing hardship and loss of jobs as a result of austerity cuts, unfair trade, repressive regimes and attacks on labour rights. With unemployment on the rise, along with a reduction of public services, workers are often forced to leave their home countries in search of a ‘’better life” elsewhere. Unfortunately, many of them end up risking their lives in crossing borders and, even when they succeed, they might face situations of exploitation, abuse and precarious work.
Throughout 2014, Public Services International has worked with its affiliates worldwide in defending quality public services for all, and promoting decent work and social protections for migrant workers. In collaboration with the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) “Decent Work Across Borders Project” for health workers, we have developed various migrant information kits, which are powerful tools for information, outreach and organising of migrant workers. Amongst other initiatives, in partnership with Global Unions and civil society organisations, we have lobbied for rights-based labour migration policies at the Global Forum on Migration and Development and at various global and regional events.
In 2015, PSI will continue with these initiatives, as it looks at enhancing efforts in organising migrant workers, developing the PSI Passport Card, which is an organising tool, reforming the labour recruitment industry and lobbying for rights-based global and regional governance of labour migration.
“PSI and the trade union movement stand in solidarity with all migrant workers everywhere,” says Rosa Pavanelli, PSI General Secretary.
“As public service workers, we continue to defend quality public services, which are the foundation for decent working and living, and for social justice. Public services fight poverty, promote equality and ensure that no member of society is left in precarious conditions.”
“Quality public services are key to maintaining solidarity and cohesion in society,” stresses Pavanelli.