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Fair Transport NOW! Workers and unions launch wave of coordinated protests and actions across Europe

news Press Release 22 Mar 2019

On land, at sea and in the air, more than 10 million Europeans work in transport. They provide vital services that we all depend on. But sadly, they are under attack.

•    Europe’s 10+ million transport workers face worsening wages and conditions
•    We have a clear, positive vision for better jobs in transport
•    100+ actions all over Europe culminate with international action week 22-26 March
•    Thousands of workers will join massive demo in Brussels on 27 March
•    Action week includes convoys, river trips, night trains, youth journeys and port blockades
•    As EU elections approach, we call on politicians to commit to our Manifesto
Chaos at Ryanair. Battles over Uber. Abuse scandals in trucking. Automation at ports and on ships. Privatisation of rail services. Harassment in warehouses. Human trafficking on river cruises. Disappointment with the EU’s “social pillar” and stalemate on the EU’s Mobility Package reforms.

Employers try to divide workers from different countries and professions to drive down wages and conditions. Most national governments turn a blind eye, and the EU does too little to protect transport workers from this social dumping and exploitation,” says ETF president Frank Moreels. “The result is job losses, dangerous conditions, unfair pay and precarious contracts. It’s the same story all over Europe, and it creates fertile ground for political resentment and populism. Now we’re sending a powerful message that Europe must do better!”

 “Workers have to react, and the only answer is solidarity,” says Eduardo Chagas, ETF general secretary. “Europe can do better, and transport workers from the Arctic Circle to the Mediterranean Sea are standing together to lead the way. We have a positive vision for better jobs in Europe, and our Fair Transport campaign has inspired unions across the continent to act.”
More than 100 protests and events in at least 18 countries across Europe show the strength and unity of our movement. This comes to a head in our European action week on 22-26 March, followed by a huge demo in Brussels on 27 March. Workers from different countries and different sectors will meet and thousands will travel to Brussels to raise their voice for Fair Transport.
Convoys, river trips, night trains, youth journeys and port blockades: these are just some of the ways workers will be crossing borders to make common cause with their colleagues. Politicians will hear our message, and many are starting to acknowledge the problems in transport.
EU elections are just round the corner, and we demand that bosses and politicians take concrete steps to implement the vision in our Fair Transport manifesto. Our proposals include:

•    a more social Europe with fair, well-enforced rules and a strong right to collective negotiation
•    access to reliable, affordable public transport for every citizen
•    action against gender-based violence at work
•    a humane approach to automation in transport

In 2019, Europe’s transport workers will stand together for decent work. FAIR TRANSPORT NOW!

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Notes to editors

Fair Transport Europe is a campaign by workers and their trade unions, coordinated by the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF). The action week will launch at 08.30 on Friday 22 March.

The launch event will be held at EPSU. You are welcome to join us for the breakfast event, or follow the live stream on our campaign Facebook page.

Read more about the campaign and previous actions on the campaign website.

You can read more about upcoming actions in the campaign calendar.

Fair Transport Europe is a campaign by the European Transport Workers’ Federation:
Rue du Marché aux Herbes 105, Boîte 11,
B — 1000 Brussels,
Belgium +32 (0) 2 285 46 60

For press and media enquiries contact:
Bryn Watkins, Communications Officer  
Tel: +32 2 285 45 87
Mob: +32 470 93 05 90

For information about the actions contact:
Wouter Goedertier, Campaign Coordinator
Tel: +32 2 285 45 87
Mob: +32 470 93 05 90

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