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 7 October 2020

    Cameroon: Union development during and after the COVID-19 pandemic

    A teacher union operating in the private sector has decided to take a series of actions to ensure decent working and living conditions for teachers and also to strengthen its capacities and ensure that teachers’ voices are really heard by the public authorities.

    Cameroon: Union development during and after the COVID-19 pandemic
  2. News 6 October 2020

    Haiti: Solidarity of the global teacher trade union movement against government harassment of educators

    Education International and its member organisations are monitoring the situation for teacher trade unionists fighting for free, quality public education for all in Haiti. In particular, they are putting pressure on the government to respect the human and trade union rights of educators

    Haiti: Solidarity of the global teacher trade union movement against government harassment of educators
  3. Opinion 29 September 2020

    “The Movement Against Pension Reform in France: Paradoxes of Teacher Militancy” by Laurent Frajerman.

    Laurent Frajerman

    Teachers in France, like in many countries, are simultaneously leading a social movement and facing the prospect of a lowering of their professional status, which would become more acute as a result of the pension reform undertaken by the French government in 2019. But their ‘uber-militancy’ (the use of strikes...

    “The Movement Against Pension Reform in France: Paradoxes of Teacher Militancy” by Laurent Frajerman.
  4. News 28 September 2020

    Madagascar: an education union is bringing teachers’ grievances and suggestions to the attention of the public authorities

    With the help of Education International’s COVID-19 solidarity fund, the Fédération chrétienne des enseignants et employés de l’Éducation (FEKRIMPAMA) has been able to get out to meet Madagascar’s teachers. The pandemic has abruptly reduced their quality of life and drawn attention to the lack of social and health security for...

    Madagascar: an education union is bringing teachers’ grievances and suggestions to the attention of the public authorities
  5. News 22 September 2020

    Canada: The Federation of Childcare Workers of Quebec calls an indefinite general strike

    The 10,000 home daycare workers affiliated to the Centrale des syndicats du Québec (CSQ) began an indefinite general strike on 21 September. They have been holding rotating strikes in the regions of Quebec since 1 September and this increases the pressure.

    Canada: The Federation of Childcare Workers of Quebec calls an indefinite general strike
  6. News 18 September 2020

    Philippines: International solidarity with workers and unionists facing tyranny

    Education International has joined other Global Unions in a webinar backing Filipino workers and trade unionists who fight to defend from governmental siege rights and democracy. The discussion was organised by the Council of Global Unions (CGU). The CGU groups Global Union Federations like EI with the International Trade Union...

    Philippines: International solidarity with workers and unionists facing tyranny
  7. Opinion 18 September 2020

    What value should we place on qualifications in the COVID-19 era? by Jacques Taty.

    Jacques Taty Mwakupemba

    What value will the certificates and qualifications awarded to graduating students and pupils by the Congolese state at the end of this year ultimately have? On 10 August, the Congolese ministry for primary, secondary and technical education opened schools, but only for pupils and students in graduating years, to prepare...

    What value should we place on qualifications in the COVID-19 era? by Jacques Taty.
  8. News 17 September 2020

    Japan: Japan Teachers’ Union secures resources for safe school reopening and monitors their expenditure

    The Japan Teachers Union (JTU) had several discussions and negotiations with the Ministry of Education concerning safe re-opening of schools during COVID-19. Although they succeeded in obtaining those funds from the national government, they followed up to monitor the use of those funds in cooperation with 17 affiliated unions. Municipalities...

    Japan: Japan Teachers’ Union secures resources for safe school reopening and monitors their expenditure
  9. Opinion 16 September 2020

    “Teachers taking the lead to effect real change: a once-in-a-generation opportunity”, by Howard Stevenson

    Howard Stevenson

    These are the most extraordinary times. At the start of 2020, almost nobody could have anticipated the extent, and the manner, in which the world has been turned upside down by a virus that has taken hundreds of thousands of lives and left nobody unaffected.

    “Teachers taking the lead to effect real change: a once-in-a-generation opportunity”, by Howard Stevenson
  10. News 16 September 2020

    Taking the lead: Teachers around the globe come together to mark World Teachers' Day 2020

    On October 5th – World Teachers' Day 2020 – Education International is hosting the biggest online meeting of teachers in history. After a year marred by disruption and crises, the 24-hour live event will give teachers everywhere the opportunity to come together, celebrate their achievements and mobilise to ensure the...

    Taking the lead: Teachers around the globe come together to mark World Teachers' Day 2020
  11. News 16 September 2020

    US: AFT and RFK Human Rights launch human rights and democracy programme

    The American Federation of Teachers (AFT), working with RFK Human Rights will launch a programme to share lesson plans on human rights and democracy developed by classroom teachers at a webinar on 17 September. The webinar, “Defenders of Human Rights and Democracy in Your Community” will feature AFT President Randi...

    US: AFT and RFK Human Rights launch human rights and democracy programme
  12. News 10 September 2020

    Germany: Call to standardise hygiene guidelines in schools

    Two education unions and a parents’ council in Germany have called for an improved standardised approach to the management of COVID-19. The call comes in response to extended hygiene guidelines issues by the country’s education ministers.

    Germany: Call to standardise hygiene guidelines in schools
  13. News 8 September 2020

    OECD Education at a Glance 2020; education for more resilient societies

    Today, 8 September, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) issued its annual Education at a Glance (EAG) report for 2020. Although the data was gathered prior to the shock of COVID-19, the concerns expressed in the findings are only amplified by the pandemic and the economic hardship that...

    OECD Education at a Glance 2020; education for more resilient societies