Graphical and Packaging Global Conference: Turning the Tide
A Clear Strategy for a better world: Organising, Empowering workers, Turning The Tide.
Graphical and Packaging Global Conference was held under the slogan TURNING THE TIDE in Istanbul with more than 110 representatives from all continents to evaluate past four years and discuss the next very challenging years for the workers in graphical and packaging sector.
Throughout the Conference, the primary focus was organising and mobilising within the sector this was addressed by many delegates as the only way to turn the tide against the negative political, economic, industrial and social impacts of technological changes, austerity measures, over capacity, increasing competition, and outsourcing.
The President of Basin-Is Yakup Akkaya, welcomed the delegates and participants with referring the glorious outcome of the Sunday election in Turkey which ended the 13 years of very authoritarian government following the long and determined struggle of the working people of Turkey.
Speaking on the growth of multinational companies he said. “As local unions we definitely need global solidarity, strong network and strategies, to organise together and fight together. In the last four years in my union has proved us that success is not a dream but a fact as we have organised these new companies” he went on to thank UNI for all their assistance.
In his address to the Conference, Tommy Andersson, the President of Graphical and Packaging Sector highlighted that the sector had adopted the Breaking Through Strategy of UNI as its primary goal at the Paris Conference. This has been successfully carried out within last period in terms of the coordination and cooperation with UNI Regions, IndustriALL and UNI SCORE and developing concrete organising activities in multinational companies, strengthening our global agreements and building new global alliances.
“We have seen that we can create the capacity to win campaigns, give power to the workers, and improve our ability to organise in our sector throughout the world. To set up trade union structures in multinational companies to build real solidarity and to share best practices.
“In spite of the structural changes and obstacles, membership of our sector is growing and there is a great opportunity to continue to grow we just have to focus on organising, signing more global agreement, empowering graphical and packaging workers”.
In his address Philip Jennings, the General Secretary of UNI Global Union outlined the challenges of today’s world, the global context and the signs of a turning of the tide in economic thinking and the future priorities of UNI Global Union.
“UNI Global Union is on the move on each of these fronts to push for a turning of the tide. At the heart of our work is union growth, our knowledge is growing, we know what works, we have new organising fund resources. We see the proof of that at UNI Graphical and Packaging where there are union growth projects in all regions in many of the key global and local companies” he concluded.
Following the reports of Sector by Andy Snoddy, Head of Department and the regional reports by Chris NG, UNI APRO Regional Secretary, Nicola Konstantinou, the Secretary of UNI Europa Graphical&Packaging and Director of MNCs, Keith Jacobs, UNI Africa Campaign and Organising Director, Marvin Largaespada, UNI Americas Regional Director, Mongi Abderrahim, MENA Director, the Conference was addressed by Anatoly Surin, the Director of Paper and Pulp Sector of IndustriALL and Pier Verdiro, on behalf of UNI MEI in terms of joint activities and future possibilities.
The delegates and participants had the opportunity to hear about the organising campaigns and activities of Sector in different regions and countries including Colombia, Malaysia, Poland, Kenya and Turkey directly from local leaders and shop-floor representatives this was very well received by the delegates and observers.
Delegates from Nepal provided an update on earthquake and accordingly the Conference called for Support to the UNI Relief Campaign for NEPAL. The Conference sent its solidarity to workers and their unions Smurfit Kappa and Prosegur who have been struggling against anti-union practices in Latin America.
At the end of the conference, Tommy Andersson, GS Facket Sweeden was re-elected as the President, Lorraine Cassin, AMWU, Australia, Joaquina Rodriguez, FSC-CCOO, Spain, Leonardo Del Roy, CONATIG, Brasil, Raffiq Moosa, UNITE, UK were elected as Vice Presidents and new Executive Committee took the office for 2015-2019. Conference concluded with Solidarity Photo.
Please visit the following link at UNI Graphical and Packaging Facebook Page for conference videos and more photos: