Union mission to Palestine and Israel promotes justice and rights for workers

A top-level union delegation featuring the president and general secretary of the ITF (International Transport Workers’ Federation), along with representatives of the ITUC (International Trade Union Confederation), Unifor and the Singapore Organisation of Seamen, arrives today for a five day visit to Israel and Palestine.

The group will be meeting with trade unionists in sites including Tel Aviv, Sderot, Ashdod Port, Nablus and the Ertah crossing, where the ITF and Unifor have provided intensive support to the Palestinian Truck Drivers’ Project.
ITF general secretary Steve Cotton explained: “This mission is the latest expression of the ITF’s determination to achieve justice and rights for workers, and our continuing humanitarian support for the people of Gaza who have been so terribly affected by military action in recent years.”
He continued: “The world cannot ignore the inequalities and human suffering that are manifest in this region, and the ITF pledges to continue to throw all its efforts behind achieving co-operation and peace there.”
ITF president Paddy Crumlin added: ““We are driven by a desire for equality, and by the manifest desire of the 4.6 million workers the ITF represents for peace and justice in Palestine, an end to its occupation and for a two-states-for-two-peoples solution. In particular the ITF is looking to strengthen transport workers’ rights and protections in both the critically important challenges of securing economic development and stabilising community services in Palestine, along with consolidating our long, practical and focused support for trade unions in both Israel and Palestine.”
He continued: “The ITF has historically been, and remains, absolutely committed to, continuing to support strong, well resourced and functional trade unions in providing an essential foundation for reconciliation and constructive next steps for working men and women and their communities labouring under extraordinary humanitarian duress in both areas."
This week’s visit is part of the ITF’s four year programme to support workers in the region, including the members of ITF-affiliated trade unions there. See http://goo.gl/D5KCb4 for more details and the background to the organisation’s determination to help secure change, and http://goo.gl/nnEdk4 for details of the ITF Gaza support fund.

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