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 2021-05-06

    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
  2. News 2021-05-05

    Korea: EI Denounces discriminatory property registration system for teachers

    The Korean Federation of Teachers Association (KFTA), a member organisation of Education International, reported that the Korean government is trying to impose new measures that would force teachers and other public servants to register their properties as well as those of their spouses, parents, children, and grandchildren with the authorities.

    Korea: EI Denounces discriminatory property registration system for teachers
  3. Take action! 2021-04-29

    Democracy in danger in Haiti: education unions mobilise

    Despite the massive mobilisation of civil society, with the education unions in the front line, President Jovenel Moïse is eroding Haitian democracy a little more every day. The right to organise and the right to education are no longer respected. The country is sinking into violence, under the indifferent gaze...

    Democracy in danger in Haiti: education unions mobilise
  4. News 2021-04-29

    Marking May Day: Global education unions in solidarity with Taiwanese educators

    May Day for All –Education International stands in solidarity and in support of the National Teachers Association (NTA) of Taiwan, in its fight to recognise and ratify 1 May as the national holiday for working men and women in the country.

    Marking May Day: Global education unions in solidarity with Taiwanese educators
  5. Take action! 2021-04-23

    Education International Condemns the Coup and Repression in Myanmar

    UPDATE - 23 April 2021 | In a resolution adopted at its 57th meeting, held virtually, the Education International Executive Board condemned the coup d’état in Myanmar, the refusal to accept the results of the election, the violence against protesters and strikers and the arrest of elected leaders, trade unionists...

    Education International Condemns the Coup and Repression in Myanmar
  6. News 2021-04-14

    Global index finds most countries do not respect academic freedom and shows signs of decline

    The second edition of the Academic Freedom Index (AFi) shows that only 20 per cent of the world’s population lives in countries where academic freedom is well protected. There are signs of decline in many countries. The pandemic, with the wide use of distance learning, produced additional threats. Academic autonomy...

    Global index finds most countries do not respect academic freedom and shows signs of decline
  7. News 2021-04-07

    USA: Education unions join forces to build back better education system

    With a new administration vowing to “build back better” from the public health, education, and economic crises of the Trump era, the two largest US educators’ unions, both Education International affiliates, have a shared agenda to ensure students and school communities receive the support they need for recovery and renewal.

    USA: Education unions join forces to build back better education system
  8. News 2021-04-06

    Europe: Study on industrial relations and privatisation

    A study for the ETUCE, EI’s European region, showed the impact of market ideology and management practices and privatisation on industrial relations and social dialogue. In addition to looking at the evolution of EU policy in the past decade, researchers studied different methods and results of industrial relations in Francophone...

    Europe: Study on industrial relations and privatisation
  9. Opinion 2021-03-30

    "Today, solidarity with women is a fight for democracy”, by Sławomir Broniarz.

    Currently, women and LGBTI people in Poland face a very difficult situation. However, it would be wrong and short-sighted to see attacks on women or LGBTI people as the problem of a single country or of one radically conservative government that seeks to establish an authoritarian regime. Poland is not...

    "Today, solidarity with women is a fight for democracy”, by Sławomir Broniarz.
  10. News 2021-03-26

    COVID-19 impact continues to affect terms and conditions in education

    Deepening inequalities across the education sector were revealed at a recent Education International webinar. Affiliates shared experiences of working to improve the terms and working conditions of teachers, academics, and education support personnel. The webinar aimed to inform Education International’s work in this area during the current public health crisis.

    COVID-19 impact continues to affect terms and conditions in education
  11. News 2021-03-26

    Mauritania: Educators’ strike for pay increase and better living conditions

    On 22 March, teachers engaged in a three-day general strike to demand a pay increase and better living conditions. This strike was punctuated with massive protests near the Education Ministry headquarters in the capital city, Nouakchott, and in the various provinces.

    Mauritania: Educators’ strike for pay increase and better living conditions
  12. Opinion 2021-03-25

    “Covid Story Will End with Equity and Leadership”, by David Edwards.

    My friend and colleague and one of the education giants of our time, Mary Hatwood Futrell, wrote this on the passing of Nelson Mandela in 2013: “We pause to mark the distance we’ve come and keep focus on what’s yet to cover. One thing seems certain as the need for...

    “Covid Story Will End with Equity and Leadership”, by David Edwards.
  13. News 2021-03-24

    Morocco: Strikes and demonstrations demand better conditions for contract teachers

    Despite harassment and violence by police forces, Moroccan teachers' unions continue to demonstrate in the capital city, Rabat, to demand permanent contracts and better working conditions. They are also protesting against the rising cost of living.

    Morocco: Strikes and demonstrations demand better conditions for contract teachers
  14. News 2021-03-23

    DRC: online union training full of promise

    The Fédération nationale des enseignants du Congo/Union Nationale des Travailleurs du Congo (FENECO/UNTC) has closed the end of its online Trade Union Academy on the fundamentals of trade unionism.

    DRC: online union training full of promise
  15. News 2021-03-16

    German and Austrian unions call for more education support personnel specialised in health issues

    While the COVID-19 crisis is still raging, the Gewerkschaft Öffentlicher Dienst (GÖD) of Austria and the German Verband Bildung und Erziehung (VBE) have pointed out that an increasing number of children with chronic illnesses are attending schools. The unions have urged their respective public authorities to hire more health professionals...

    German and Austrian unions call for more education support personnel specialised in health issues
  16. News 2021-03-12

    Vaccine nationalism and crisis profiteering: Unions take action

    “Just 10 countries, some of the richest in the world, have administered 75% of vaccinations. Meanwhile, around 130 countries that account for 2.5 billion people have not administered a single dose. This is not an issue on which we can afford to be passive. The only solution to a global...

    Vaccine nationalism and crisis profiteering: Unions take action