Resolution on issues in the Asia-Pacific Region

published 25 July 2015 updated 31 March 2017

Against the violation of human and trade union rights in the Asia Pacific Region; especially in Fiji and Cambodia.

The 7th Education International (EI) World Congress meeting in Ottawa, Canada, from 21nd to 26th July 2015:

1. Recognizes that many member organizations in the Asia Pacific region do not enjoy trade union rights. They do not have the right to organize and collectively bargain. There is a growing trend of governments violating trade union rights and disrespecting labour legislations.

2. Acknowledges that in a year (2012) according to the ITUC, more than 17 trade unionists were murdered, 66 received death threats, 191 were imprisoned, 2624 arrested, 693 inured and 3462 dismissed in the region.

3. Notes that:

a. The governments in Fiji, Cambodia, and South Korea harass, intimidate and delegalize teacher organizations without any justified causes. It is difficult for trade unions and teachers unions in the Philippines, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Thailand to defend the rights of teachers.

b. The trade union rights are further curtailed after the elections in Fiji September 2014. According to a government decision all trade union elections are to be controlled and coordinated by the Fiji Election Office. The unions are no longer represented in consultations with employer on any matters. Many teachers have been fired without due process.

c. The Cambodian government continues to show disrespect and fails to act on the recommendations made by the ILO Committee of Experts on Application of the ILO Conventions and Recommendations year after year for five years. The government continues to harass and intimidate the EI member organisation, the Cambodian Independent Teachers’ Association which filed complaints at the ILO.

4. Believing that human and trade union rights are fundamental in creating a just and equitable society and the freedom of association is critically important in defending the rights, the Seventh EI World Congress;

5. Commits Education International in general to continue building solidarity against the violation of rights in the Asia Pacific Region and in particular continue raising issues of Cambodia and Fiji with the ILO and other relevant institutions.

6. Calls EI member organizations to influence their respective governments and pressurize the Fijian and Cambodian governments to respect human and trade union rights.

7. Urges EI member organizations to continue fully extending support to the “Action Appeals” when made in favour of the EI member organizations in the Asia Pacific Region.