Representatives from the ITF Dockers’ Section and ITF Americas regional office have been on the ground over the past week working shoulder to shoulder to strengthen and activate Peruvian dockers’ unions.
“As multinationals try and force a race to the bottom in terms of dockers' rights, we must increase our industrial muscle through global organising to combat these attacks. Dockers unions in Callao recognised the capacity within the ITF to organise dockers globally, and now want to join the ITF family,” said Enrico Tortolano from the ITF Docker’ Section.
ITF Americas acting regional secretary, Edgar Diaz, also acknowledged the progress at the Port of Callao which will see all unions at the port become part of the ITF family if the affiliations are successful.
“It’s an historic day in Latin America where two key dockers’ unions at Callao’s DP World terminal, SUNESPORT and SUTRADPWORLD, took the decision to join the ITF and fight back against multinational companies like DP World and APMT, that don’t want to promote fair wages and decent conditions across the region,” said Diaz.
“Building collective power and bargaining leverage through strong trade unions and strong international solidarity is vital to protecting workers pay and conditions. DP World’s outrageous attacks on wharfies in Australia is a clear example of this.
“Dockers unions in Callao understand the importance of being part of an international federation, and are ready to be active and provide support for our brothers and sisters anywhere in the world where solidarity is needed,” said Diaz.
The organising work follows agreement from the Dockers’ Section Committee meeting in Genoa in May, that building union capacity and bringing in new affiliates was a priority and essential to winning current and future disputes and campaigns.
“We’ve set ourselves an ambitious agenda to drive growth and to actively engage unions and their members in our campaigns, this only happens through organising,” said ITF Dockers’ chair Paddy Crumlin. “We’re going to continue to make the case, we’re going to continue to build dockers’ strength and unity, because we’re determined that all dock workers - regardless of their geography, ethnicity or gender – have dignity and the same fundamental rights.”