International solidarity

Support and solidarity for workers and trade unionists around the world

ETF Women's Committee: section and country reports

The ETF Women's Committee meeting on 19-20 March 2014 heard the following reports:


Civil aviation
Unions are campaigning for a non-punitive reporting system, and demanding consistency of workplace rules across all grades, from cabin crew (female-dominated) to pilots (male-dominated).


  • Working in ports is very ‘women-unfriendly’. The unions are raising two main issues: the recruitment of women to port jobs; and improving working conditions for women.

Report: European Parliament Public Hearing on Work-Life Balance and Gender Equality

On Wednesday 18 March, the ETF Women’s Committee attended a public hearing on Work-Life Balance and Gender Equality, held by the European Parliament’s Committee on Women’s Rights and Gender Equality. Click this link for event information, including some of the speakers' presentations. The afternoon was divided into two sessions, each addressed by a panel of speakers followed by a question-and-answer session.

RMT Protests At Lithuanian Embassy Against Anti Gay Law Proposals

The National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) and African LGBT Out and Proud Diamond Group protesting outside the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania - 27th Nov 2013.

The RMT is alarmed by reports of rising hostility towards Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) rights in Lithuania, and of attempts to introduce proposals to Parliament that attack the rights of Lithuania’s LGBT citizens.

We strongly oppose the proposals to:

  • ban gender reassignment
  • give legal protection to ‘criticism of homosexuality’ ie. anti-LGBT speech

Huber Ballesteros – Help Needed To Secure His Release From Detention

From RMT General Secretary Bob Crow

Huber Ballesteros is a high-profile Colombian trade union leader. He sits on the Executive Committee of Central Unitaria de Trabajdores de Colombia (CUT is Colombia's largest trade union federation) as well as being Vice President of FENSUAGRO Agricultural Workers' Union.

In an attempt to intimidate him into silence and inactivity, Huber was recently arrested and remains in detention. He must be promptly released, though even when that does occur, he – together with his family and his fellow trade unionists – will remain in danger.

Women (and men) workers in Finland's transport industry

On the first day of the ETF Women's Committee meeting, several Finnish transport trade unionists attended as guests, including women from the logistics, shipping, rail and salaried sectors. We also had a presentation from Tapio Bergholm, who has written a history of Finnish transport workers. The Finnish member of the ETF Women's Committee is Satu, from the Finnish Seamen's Union, who was elected one of the two Vice-Chairs of the Committee.

RMT To Join Hate Homophobia Love Russia Demo

The RMT will be joining the 'Hate Homiphobia, Love Russia' demo; in protest of Russia's anti-gay laws, on September 3rd. All RMT members are invited to attend.

Below is detail of the demo from the Peter Tatchell Foundation.

Love Russia, Hate Homophobia - G20 Day of Action

Join us Tuesday 3 September, two days before the G20 summit

5-8pm, Downing Street, London SW1

A Day of Action - Love Russia, Hate Homophobia - will be held in London on Tuesday 3 September, just two days before the G20 summit opens in St Petersburg, Russia, hosted by President Putin.

Message Of Support To Transport Workers Union

The Transport Worker's Union New York chapter - 'Local 100' - which primarily represents members in New York's subway system, has advised members to enter stations at caution speed. The TWU explain that their have been 150 'one-unders' - or 12-9's, an average of three per week, none of which have been the fault of the train driver. By entering the station at caution speed the union believes lives can be saved and drivers spared the trauma of being involved in an incident.

The unions leaflet on the action is attached below

World Aids Day 2012

International Transport Federation recognises RMT union as the only union in the uk to play a role in activities centered around world aids day in its HIV AIDS bulliten dec 2012.

Activists in the bakerloo branch received information, posters and stickers based on a campaign led by the ITF to get to zero in the month leading up to world aids day (1st dec 2012)

“World AIDS Day this year is about being a ‘change agent: Getting to Zero’ – that is
zero new HIV infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS related deaths.”

RMT Demands Immediate Release Of Tehran Bus Union Treasurer Reza Shahabi

Transport union RMT today expressed its deep concern at the continued imprisonment of sick Iranian prisoner Reza Shahabi, treasurer of our sister organisation the Syndicate of Workers of Tehran and Suburbs Bus Company, otherwise known as the Vahed union.

Reza Shahabi has been incarcerated for over two and a half years. His physical condition has deteriorated recently, following a surgery to his neck and spine. It is now reported that Raza has begun a hunger strike.

Against medical advice, Reza was sent back to Evin prison in August this year. After being denied a transfer to a hospital for proper treatment, Shahabi has been refusing food since 17th December.

RMT Hold Protest Outside Ugandan Embassy Over Threat To LGBT Rights

The Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers Union held a protest outside the Ugandan embassy in London over the governments plan to introduce a new law known as the 'Kill the Gays Bill.' If this bill is enacted, Uganda would be one of the legally most discriminatory places for sexual minorities in the world.

RMT members handed out hundreds of leaflets in Trafalgar square and helped to spread awareness of LGBT Ugandan's plight to thousands more with flags and banners which caught the attention of many passers-by. Several people approached us to voice there support for LGBT Ugandan's and disgust at what the government there is planning.