Ebola Response

Deaths to health workers accounted for six percent of all deaths confirmed as due to EVD, even to the end of the outbreaks. Over 500 health workers, including members of PSI affiliated unions, were killed in the line of duty. PSI is actively lobbying national governments, the ILO and WHO and working with health and allied care workers in our unions to rebuild health systems that can resist future outbreaks in the context of universal access to essential healthcare, which is the core of the post-2015 agenda for health.

In New York, PSI affiliate 1199SEIU delivers letter to the Ambassador of Liberia to the US

20 February 2017

On February 17, joining the worldwide protests for the reinstatement of health workers Joseph S. Tamba and George Poe Williams, President and General Secretary of NAHWAL, respectively, Maria Castaneda on behalf of 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East delivered a letter to the Ambassador Jeremiah C. Suluneth.

Trade union rights in Liberia: PSI meets the Ambassador to the UN in Geneva

17 February 2017

On February 17, PSI Deputy General Secretary, David Boys, Health Officer, Baba Aye, and Trade Union Rights Officer, Camilo Rubiano, met with the Ambassador of Liberia to the UN organizations in Geneva, Mr. Paul Wolokollie Tate, to discuss the situation of Joseph S. Tamba and George Poe Williams, President and General Secretary of NAHWAL, respectively.

Rosa Pavanelli addresses the ComHEEG meeting held in Geneva

14 December 2016

Rosa Pavanelli addresses the High-Level Ministerial Meeting on Health Employment and Economic Growth being held today and tomorrow [14-15 December] in Geneva #ComHEEG #PublicHealth4All

UNISON Petitions Liberian Government: Demands Reinstatement of Tamba and Poe Williams

18 November 2016

In a letter to the president of Liberia, submitted at the country's Embassy in London on November 18, Dave Prentis, UNISON's General Secretary expressed “grave concerns over the situation of workers in the health sector in Liberia”, drawing particular attention to the dismissals of Brothers Joseph S. Tamba and George Poe Williams.

Audio: RadioLabour interview with NAHWAL leaders

18 October 2016

In 2014, at the height of the Ebola crisis, the Liberian government fired 22 union leaders. It still has not reinstated two of the fired leaders: Joseph Tamba, the president of the National Health Workers' Association of Liberia and George Poe Williams, the General Secretary . A RadioLabour interview with Mr Williams.

Respect the right to organise - Reinstate Liberian trade union leaders NOW!

06 October 2016

The Liberian regime has no respect for basic Human Rights; or Workers Rights!



In Liberia, the government has arbitrarily fired health workers who were on the front lines of the fight against Ebola; simply because they were trying to ensure adequate protection and working conditions for public workers. Before you consider traveling to or investing in Liberia, think about whether you really want to support a regime which treats health heroes as disposable goods.



Learn more about how to stand up for the rights of Liberian workers by watching the video above and signing the petition below!

UN Commission: New Investments in Global Health Workforce Will Create Jobs and Drive Economic Growth

21 September 2016
PSI General Secretary Rosa Pavanelli joins the Presidents of France and South Africa calling for urgent public investments globally to create new jobs in the health sector in order to prevent a projected shortfall of 18 million health workers primarily in low- and lower-middle-income countries, and help countries to maximize the social and economic benefits of increased health employment.

Respect the right to organise - Reinstate Liberian trade union leaders NOW!

06 October 2016

The Liberian regime has no respect for basic Human Rights; or Workers Rights!



In Liberia, the government has arbitrarily fired health workers who were on the front lines of the fight against Ebola; simply because they were trying to ensure adequate protection and working conditions for public workers. Before you consider traveling to or investing in Liberia, think about whether you really want to support a regime which treats health heroes as disposable goods.



Learn more about how to stand up for the rights of Liberian workers by watching the video above and signing the petition below!

Solidarity call for aid against impacts of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)

23 October 2014
The fight against Ebola in Guinea - Healthworkers in protective equipment

#protecthealthworkers - PSI is calling on all affiliates to donate to the PSI Aid Fund. The funds will be used for the immediate relief and assistance of our members and their families, especially in cases where health workers have died and their families have no access to social protection.

Policy brief EB-148 : PSI Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Intervention Strategy

06 October 2016

This policy brief on the PSI Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Intervention Strategy was produced for the PSI Executive Board EB-148 held at the ILO in Geneva (Switzerland) on 19-20 May 2016. Its objective is to inform EB-148 of related work and activities. The brief is available in English, French, Spanish, German, Swedish and Japanese.

Final report of the expert group to the High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth

21 September 2016

The United Nations Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, established the High-Level Commission on
Health Employment and Economic Growth (ComHEEG) in March 2016. Its task is to propose intersectoral
actions to guide and stimulate the creation of health and social sector jobs to advance inclusive
economic growth.
In support of the Commission’s work, an Expert Group was convened to critically review the
available evidence.

Safe Workers Save Lives: PSI Health Priorities and Trade Union Response to the Ebola Virus Disease

21 September 2016
Photo: UNMEER/Martine Perret. Creative Commons

At the start of the Ebola crisis, PSI was contacted by its affiliates from the three most affected countries with the alarming news that health workers were dying on the workfloor. This update reports on the work that has taken place on the ground since the implementation of PSI's Ebola response strategy.

PSI Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) Intervention Strategy 2014-16

27 October 2014
Ebola in Guinea

The Ebola crisis in West Africa demonstrates clearly the threat posed to societies as a whole when quality public health systems are absent. The dire consequences of the outbreak must be seen, in general, as symptoms resulting from decades of lack of investments in public sector health systems. PSI's strategy, focussed on a trade union response to the crisis, is available for download.

Health unions combat Ebola virus on West African Health Organisation Day

11 July 2014

Healthcare providers in Nigeria join their colleagues across the West African sub-region under the aegis of the West African Health Sector Unions’ Network (WAHSUN) to commemorate the 27th West African Health Organisation (WAHO) Day, with the theme: Universal Health Coverage: Issues, Challenges and Opportunities.

Statement: Healthcare workers killed by Ebola’s worst outbreak ever

08 July 2014

The global trade union federation Public Services International condemns the preventable deaths of dozens of healthcare workers, killed on the job by Ebola because they did not have the necessary tools and equipment.

International Summit Nursing and Ebola Virus

24 October 2014
International Summit Nursing and Ebola Virus

PSI will take part in the International Summit on Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), organised by the International Council of Nurses (ICN) that represents 13 million nurses worldwide.

Video interviews: SOLSICO activists in healthcare

23 November 2016

At its May 2016 meeting, PSI’s World Women’s Committee (WOC) agreed that a high priority area of work is workplace violence in the health sector. The WOC also agreed that the experiences of affiliates in raising awareness and developing campaigns and actions to eliminate workplace violence will contribute to the discussions and preparation for developing an ILO standard (convention and recommendations) on violence against women and men at work. This video of interviews is part of the case study on the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Audio: RadioLabour interview with NAHWAL leaders

18 October 2016

In 2014, at the height of the Ebola crisis, the Liberian government fired 22 union leaders. It still has not reinstated two of the fired leaders: Joseph Tamba, the president of the National Health Workers' Association of Liberia and George Poe Williams, the General Secretary . A RadioLabour interview with Mr Williams.

Audio: WINS Radio reports on dismissed Liberian health workers

11 April 2016

WINS Radio reports on PSI's call to action for the reinstatement of two Liberian health union leaders dismissed in February 2014 with 22 other workers following a nationwide strike in protest of working conditions and the lack of protective equipment and medication.

Video: When a health worker dies doing their job it means that there is something very wrong with the system

08 October 2015

Dr Jasper Goss, PSI Project Officer,  explains how PSI had seen and understood the early warning signs of a system that was failing the public and health workers.

Video: Ebola is not an African problem, but a global issue

08 October 2015

Dr L. Toni Lewis, Chair of SEIU Healthcare, USA, participated in the special session on Ebola Virus Disease during PSI's 12th Regional Conference for Africa and Arab countries.

Video: In Nigeria, faced with rocketing electricity costs but no electricity, unions and the public demand end to privatisation

28 May 2015

Representatives of PSI affiliates met in Geneva on 27-28 May 2015 for the PSI Executive Board meeting. In this interview, Adeniyi Peters Adeyemi, Non-Academic Staff Union of Education and Associated Institutions (NASU), Nigeria, speaks about privatisation, reforms and Ebola. He explains how Nigerian people have suffered under privatisation, and how in view of the consequences of privatisation, they are now joining in the unions’ opposition and asking the government to fix the problems. He also explains how Nigeria achieved good results in tackling the Ebola crisis.

David Boys speaks at the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction in Sendai, Japan, 16 March 2015

27 March 2015

PSI Deputy General Secretary David Boys spoke at the World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction, held in Sendai, Japan, on 16 March.

Video: PSI names the 325 health workers killed by Ebola

25 November 2014

"Over 300 workers have died on the job in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, trying to save lives and contain the Ebola outbreak. They were doctors, nurses, midwives, cleaners, ambulance drivers, pharmacists, community health workers – among others.
PSI wants to remember all of those workers one by one, name by name. We will honour their sacrifice by pledging to ensure that all workers enjoy safe working conditions everywhere and to strengthen the fight for quality public healthcare for all."

Video: Liberian Government denies compensation to health workers who die from Ebola while saving lives

03 June 2014

Watch an interview with Paul Tilame of the PSI-affiliated National Private Sector Health Workers Union of Liberia (NPSHWU) talking about the protests at the health ministers summit in Monrovia in April and the deaths of the health workers from Ebola.