Africa & Arab countries

Africa and Arab countries form one of the four regions in the PSI structure. Our 153 affiliated organisations in some 43 countries represent a membership of around 1.5 million people here. The regional secretariat is based in Lomé, Togo. Contact our regional offices.

Privatization Watch - 02/2017

09 March 2017

An overview of global trends in privatization of public services. Privatization Watch - Issue 02/2017

Women around the world stand up for social justice. Enough is enough.

08 March 2017

On 8th March this year, we pledge our solidarity with the millions of women in grassroots movements and trade unions around the world in saying ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! No to racism, xenophobia, homophobia. We demand autonomy and control over our own bodies. Pay equity now! Rights without borders. No more gender-based violence in the workplace and quality public services for all! #IWD2017

International Labour Conference 2017

07 March 2017

The 106th session of the International Labour Conference (ILC) will take place in Geneva, Switzerland, from 5 to 16 June 2017. It will be held at the UN Palais des Nations and ILO headquarters.

PSI launches the Human Right to Health Campaign in Southern Africa

06 March 2017

PSI affiliates organised the sub-regional launch of the global campaign at Reef Hotels in Johannesburg on 3 March 2017. They all pledged their full support for the initiative, endorsing its framework for advocacy within southern African countries.

From public good to profit margin: how privatisation is failing our communities

06 March 2017
Photograph: Terry Vine/Getty Images/Blend Images

David Hetherington, Chair of the People's Inquiry, has penned an article for the Guardian based on what he learned from traveling around Australia speaking to communities about the impact of privatisation. When institutions that fulfil a deeply human function – teaching, caring for people at their most vulnerable moments – are forced to behave like businesses, everyone loses.

KHMU resolves to struggle for better health care and the candlelight revolution in Korea, at annual Congress

02 March 2017

The Korean Health and Medical Union (KHMU) held its 2017 Annual Congress on February 22-23 at the International Conference Hall of the Seoul Women’s Plaza. The meeting was attended by delegates from the 180 branches of KHMU, representing 50,000 members.

Zero Discrimination Day: Make Some Noise – and ACT to Realise the Right to Health

01 March 2017

PSI and its affiliates in the health sector across the world joined in marking March 1, as global Zero Discrimination Day. The day has been set aside since 2014 to raise awareness on the need to roll back all forms of discrimination in access to health services, particularly for persons living with HIV.

Trade Unions and campaigners around the world boycott World Bank consultation on Public Private Partnerships (PPPs)

28 February 2017

Trade Unions and campaigners around the world accuse the World Bank of encouraging dangerous hidden debts. The boycott on the World Bank consultation on Public Private Partnerships (PPPs) was launched after the World Bank ignored repeated calls to stop promoting PPPs that contain dangerous hidden debts. Most governments leave these costs out of the accounting books, which can lead to crippling hidden debt – especially damaging for world’s poorest countries.

PSI at The Vatican: Human Right to Water

27 February 2017

Check out our General Secretary Rosa Pavanelli discussing our work alongside our affiliates on the Human Right to Water and why it is so important at a special seminar held at the Vatican by Pope Francis. Trade Unions, NGOs, UN Human Rights experts and the Pope all agree: Water is a human right and needs to be governed publicly, in the public interest. Not by profit-maximizing private corporations.

PSI launches Human Right to Health campaign in the Oceania sub-region

27 February 2017

PSI affiliate the New Zealand Public Service Association (NZPSA), along with other NZ unions representing nurses, doctors, allied health professionals, cleaners, administration staff and paramedics have united under the banner “Yes We Care”. They will tour the country in the lead up to their national election.

PSI attends seminar on the Human Right to Water in the Vatican City

23 February 2017

PSI delegation including Rosa Pavanelli, PSI General Secretary, take part in the human right to water seminar on 23 and 24 February at the Pontifical Academy of Sciences in the Vatican City.

First International Symposium on Community Health Workers starts in Uganda

21 February 2017

The first International Symposium on Community Health Workers (CHWs) commenced on 21 February at Hotel Africana in Kampala, Uganda. The 3-day symposium with the theme: Contribution of CHWs towards the attainment of Sustainable Development Goals brings together over 450 policy makers, academics, practitioners, and civil society organisations in the health sector, including PSI.

In the prison where the massacre took place, conditions are bad for the prisoners and precarious for the staff

21 February 2017

The company managing the prison has stated that it does not exercise police powers of enforcement inside the Manaus prison, however this task is stipulated in the contract signed with the government of the state of Amazonas and was observed during visits made by human rights advocates.

Why privatization simply aggravates the crisis in Brazilian prisons

21 February 2017

The mass slaughter that took place earlier this year in a prison in northern Brazil shows that when prisons are managed by private companies it does not solve the problem but rather contributes to their deterioration.

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.

Swaziland - Stop the crackdown on public workers

08 August 2012
Swaziland protestors photo by Garry Knight

The government of Swaziland is cracking down on public sector workers across the board. Civil servants, nurses, teachers and transport workers are all under threat. In support of their affiliates in Swaziland, Public Services International, Education International and the International Transport Workers' Federation have organised a joint protest action on Labourstart.

A gold medal for solidarity

25 July 2012

London's bus workers have won a huge victory. Now, it's the cleaners' turn.
Just three days before the opening of the Olympic games in London, London's bus drivers have won a big victory. As their union Unite reported, the workers "overwhelmingly voted to accept an offer of an Olympic award, meaning most workers will get £577 for the massive increase in workload over the Olympics.”

A Financial Transactions Tax for the future we want

09 July 2012
Robin Hood Tax logo

Rio de Janeiro – 22 June 2012:

The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, known as RIO+20, has taken place at a critical moment. The G20, meeting almost simultaneously, has not shown enough collective will by the world’s major economies to resolve the economic and financial turmoil we face. Member states of the European Union are facing a crucial test of their leadership in overcoming the financial and debt crisis. They are being called to choose whether or not to adopt a FTT for human and sustainable development. A positive answer could lead to a fairer and more sustainable future for the EU and contribute to sustainable human development worldwide.

Send your protest against arrests in Turkey

02 July 2012
Image of riot police

The harassment and intimidation of trade unionists in Turkey continues: in the early morning hours on June 25, the Turkish police raided offices and houses of trade unionists in Turkey. 71 were detained, and eight of these are still under arrest, including the President of PSI-affiliated KESK, Lami Özgen.

Algeria: judicial workers on hunger strike

06 June 2012

In protest against repeated human and trade union rights violations, nine union members, five women and four men, began an unlimited hunger strike on 6 May in Algiers, Algeria. Despite urgent requests for meetings, and daily reports on the hunger strikers' rapidly deteriorating health, the government continues to refuse to address the judicial workers’ issues.
PSI has already written to President Bouteflika and is now calling on its affiliates to take similar solidarity action, urging the Algerian government to start negotiations and to open the social dialogue that could resolve the ongoing crisis.

Some signs of change in Botswana - but yet to see the results

17 April 2012
Trade unionists in Botswana

Earlier this year the government of Botswana categorically stated that there will be no collective bargaining for the period 2012/2013 for financial reasons. Now the government has withdrawn the letter.

Implementing the Right to Water in the green economy

21 March 2012
Demonstration at the alternative water forum

Water Justice activists, including PSI unions, have successfully pushed the human right to water and sanitation (RTW) onto the global agenda. The UN General Assembly Resolution 64/292 of 2010 has set the standard for government obligations in ensuring universal access. Many national campaigns insist that governments adopt RTW and implement universal access to water and sanitation. Unions are working with a broad range of allies at global, regional, national and local levels.

Apply a financial transaction tax to heal global inequities

12 October 2011

Public Services International affiliate healthcare members from Europe and elsewhere are invited to join the delegation for a special event now scheduled for 3 November at the G20 Summit in Cannes, France. This action to promote a financial transaction tax to world leaders is led by PSI, our affiliate National Nurses United, the International Trade Union Confederation and civil society partners.

Ghana: Tax Justice and Public Sector Restructuring

06 September 2016

This background document was prepared for a Conference on Tax Justice held in Ghana as part of a two-year project (funded by FNV) with affiliate trade unions in Ghana, with the aim of promoting quality public services through a fair tax system under conditions of decent work.

PSI Speech delivered at ILO Tripartite Technical Meeting on refugees

05 July 2016
ILO TTM on refugees

PSI Migration Programme Coordinator, Genevieve Gencianos, delivered a speech on 5 July at the Opening Session of the ILO Tripartite Technical Meeting on the Access of Refugees and other Forcibly Displaced Persons to the Labour Market. The meeting is being held from 5-7 July in Geneva, Switzerland.

PSI International Young Worker's Conference for the commemoration of the 40 Years' Anniversary of the Soweto Uprising

28 June 2016

The International Young Workers’ Conference commemorating the 40 Year Anniversary of the 1976 Soweto Uprising was held from the 15-18 June at the Reef Hotel in Johannesburg. The conference is part of the flagship activities of the “Strengthening the Role of Young Workers Public Sector Trade Unions in South Africa” project, sponsored by UNISON.

Overview of proposed privatization of Electricity Sector in Ghana

22 June 2016

This recent analysis by PSIRU shows the influence of the US government and its Millennium Challenge Corporation in the planned energy privatization in Ghana.

United Nations General Assembly High Level Summit on Large Flows of Migrants and Refugees

17 June 2016

On 19 September 2016, the United Nations General Assembly will hold a “High Level Summit on Large Flows of Migrants and Refugees” at the UN in New York. The summit will call for a Global Compact on responsibility-sharing for refugees, which includes a comprehensive response plan on refugees and the strengthening of the global governance of migration.

PSI World Women's Committee report to the Executive Board

30 May 2016
WOC

The PSI World Women´s Committee met on 18th May 2016, with the participation of 33 women (16 titulars and 17 observers) and the General Secretary. Discussion focused on how to shape PSI´s policy on gender equality for the 2017 Congress.

Route of Shame 2016: Campaign Materials

26 May 2016

Join PSI and global trade unionists in a walk for social justice! Download campaign materials here and find out more about the Route of Shame 2016.

Africa and Arab News

31 March 2016

This newsletter is produced by PSI's African regional office and covers news and events in the African and Arab countries.

Comments on Expert Group background note for the first meeting of the UN High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth

24 March 2016

PSI gave evidence to the United Nations High-Level Commission on Health Employment and Economic Growth in Lyon, France on 23 March 2016. PSI argued that public spending on public health was both a government obligation to ensure universal access to health care and an investment in economic growth.

Logos for the World Water Day (WWD) 2016

19 March 2016

Logos for the World Water Day 2016 are available for download in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese in both JPG and PDF format.

Arab women & the right to peace

18 March 2016
Arab women

On 18 March, during the 60th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, PSI & WILF/MADRE/AEDIDH/ITUC will organise a trade union parallel event on: Arab Women and the human rights to peace. It will provide an opportunity for trade union and social movement leaders from Arab countries to give their views on peace as a human right.

Development Cooperation

17 March 2016

PSI provided input to an assessment from the water justice network of development cooperation support for the implementation of human rights. Development partners, including the World Bank, have violated human rights, including with their conditionalities for private sector participation. We call for the suspension of grant and loan programs which implicitly or explicitly promote PPP schemes. The implementation of Sustainable Development Goal #6 on water and sanitation presents opportunities to improve the practices of development partners. We point to the examples of public-public partnerships (PUPs), which are gaining in popularity but have not received adequate support from development partners – in part, because PUPs are not-for-profit. We also call for more rigorous measures to ensure that all rights holders can participate in decision-making.

Report: Protecting the Public Interest from Predatory Privatization and Outsourcing

17 March 2016

A Public Services International Leadership Meeting held on 2-3 December 2015 in Washington, D.C. USA and hosted by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME). The objective of this PSI leadership meeting was to explore ways to work together to strengthen the fight against the global push for privatization, linking national campaigns to regional and global dynamics.

PSI Report: Gender equality and water

17 March 2016

PSI submitted case studies from India, Kenya, Argentina and Ecuador on the gender implications of the human right to water and sanitation for the UN Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation. The studies touch on gender implications of legislation, public finance, participatory decision-making, and monitoring.

Posters: Hope has no borders

17 March 2016

Public services welcome migrants and refugees say PSI"s posters for the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on 21st March.

Trade Union Forum on Climate and Jobs

30 November 2015

Trade unions will be present in Paris and will be engaging between them and with allies on their experiences on climate change around the world. Join us in our forum!

Protecting the public interest from predatory privatization and outsourcing

27 November 2015
AFSCME

For two days union leaders and policy leaders from the World Bank, the IMF and the U.S. Government led by Treasury, will discuss the global push for privatization, linking unions' national campaigns to regional and global dynamics.

PSI/EPSU-ILO Roundtable on Labour Migration and Trade Union Rights

23 November 2015

The PSI/EPSU-ILO Roundtable on Labour Migration and Trade Union Rights is taking place in Yerevan, Armenia on 24-25 November. This meeting will be held in English, Russian and Armenian with the participation of PSI/EPSU affiliates, ILO Moscow ACTRAV and invited guests, experts and PSI staff.

12th Regional Conference for Africa and Arab Countries and related meetings

14 September 2015

The 12th Regional Conference for Africa and Arab Countries (AFRECON) and related meetings will take place, from 22nd to 25th September 2015, at the Gaborone Sun Conference Centre, in Gaborone (Botswana).

Global Labour Tax Summit

28 July 2015
Photo: Tax - Creative Commons - 401Kcalculator.org

PSI is organising a Global Labour Tax Summit in partnership with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES), to examine tax issues from a labour perspective; with inequality rising rapidly and tax scandals increasingly making front page news, public anger is growing.

Third International Conference on Financing for Development (FFD3)

13 July 2015

As negotiations for the Post 2015 Development Agenda draw to a close at the United Nations, Member States are discussing means of implementation and financing. PSI is taking an active part in this process together with other trade unions and civil society partners.

Mission impossible: Development without Public Services

08 July 2015

In the run up to the Third UN Conference on Financing for Development (FFD) in Addis Ababa, PSI, together with eight civil society organising partners, is holding an event to raise concerns on the effects of public-private partnerships (PPPs) in health, education and water and sanitation and propose alternative policy options that are more compatible with social development.

Young workers' seminar for Africa & Arab countries

19 June 2015

The Africa & Arab countries Young worker's seminar will be held in Gaborone, Botswana on 23 September 2015. This meeting will be held prior to the 12th Regional Conference for Africa & Arab countries (AFRECON).

Women's Seminar for Africa & Arab countries

19 June 2015

The Africa & Arab countries Women's Seminar will be held in Gaborone, Botswana on 22 September 2015. This meeting will be held prior to the 12th Regional Conference for Africa & Arab countries (AFRECON).

AFREC 2015: Regional Executive Committee for Africa and Arab countries

19 June 2015

The Regional Executive Committee for Africa and Arab countries (AFREC) will be held in Gaborone, Botswana on 22 September 2015. This meeting will be held prior to the 12th Regional Conference for Africa & Arab countries (AFRECON).

Global Day of Action on Trade and Investment Treaties

14 April 2015
Photo: Creative Commons - MehrDemokratie - Charlie Rutz

A coalition of civil society groups and unions around the world has organised a global day of action on 18 April to demonstrate against the negotiation of harmful trade agreements. PSI endorses this day of action and encourages affiliates to participate.

May Day 2015

14 April 2015

Public service trade unions and the Global Alliance for Tax Justice invite members to join in marching this May Day under the banner “Working people pay taxes – corporations must pay their share!”

ILO Tripartite meeting on the Right to Strike

20 February 2015

The Meeting will bring together participants from 32 Governments of ILO member States, 16 Employer participants and 16 Worker participants nominated by the Employers’ group and the Workers’ group of the Governing Body respectively, as well as observers from the three groups.

High level meetings ITUC/Global Unions and World Bank/IMF

26 January 2015

The meetings will address topics of concern to trade unions and will include serious discussions on the policies of the World Bank and IMF in a variety of areas, including:

CSW59: Commission on the Status of Women

10 December 2014

The 59th session of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW59) will take place at the UN Headquarters, in New York, from 9th to 20th March 2015.

Video: Herta Däubler-Gmelin, Professor of law, former member of Parliament and Minister of Justice, Germany

17 October 2014

'It is important to consult not only European parliamentarians but also national parliamentarians" says Herta Däubler-Gmelin, keynote speaker at PSI’s Global Trade in Services Forum, From GATS to TISA, held in partnership with the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) and the Our World Is Not For Sale (OWINFS) network.

Photos: PSI Global Trade Summit

23 September 2014

PSI, affiliate leaders and partners convened in Washington, D.C., 15-17 September 2014 to discuss the new threats posed to workers, public services, democracy and our communities by trade and investment agreements.

Photos: People's Climate March 2014

23 September 2014

Following the strategic discussion on advancing social ownership of energy organised by the Trade Unions for Energy Democracy (TUED), PSI General Secretary, Rosa Pavanelli, and participants joined in the People's Climate March where over 400,000 people demonstrated in the streets of New York.

Video: Climate Change and Energy Democracy

22 September 2014

Ahead of the People's Climate March on 21 September in New York City, PSI General Secretary, Rosa Pavanelli, and author and activist Naomi Klein, talk about Climate Change, Energy Democracy and the role of the trade unions.

Audio: RadioLabour report on the Global Trade Summit

19 September 2014

Public services unions worldwide are determined to open to public scrutiny a new wave of global trade agreements, which are now being discussed behind closed doors. Listen to the RadioLabour report on PSI's Global Trade Summit.

Video: The history and geopolitics of trade in services

18 September 2014

Listen to Robert Stumberg, Professor of Law and Director Harrison Institute for Public Law/Georgetown Law, on how 30 years of liberalization and the new wave of trade agreements limit the role of government and deepen corporate power.

Video: Union leaders open new trade agreements to public debate

18 September 2014

Union leaders from around the world convened in Washington DC, 15-17 September 2014, to discuss the new threats posed to workers, public services, democracy and our communities by trade and investment agreements.

Video: From GATS to TISA: Corporate power, inequality and the new attacks on public services

17 September 2014

Listen to Deborah James', Director of International Programs Centre for Economic and Policy Research, analysis of the results of 30 years of liberalization and how the new wave of trade agreements limit the role of government and deepen corporate power.

Audio: Globe Trade Agreements for Corporations

04 September 2014

RadioLabour has prepared a special report on the global trade agreements: What they are and how they will affect working people.

Video: Trade agreements and the threat to quality public services

24 June 2014

Sanya Reid Smith - Third World Network, Guest speaker at PSI's Executive Board meeting in Nyon, Switzerland 24-25 June 2014.

Audio: A RadioLabour interview with Rosa Pavanelli on World Public Services Day

23 June 2014

Monday June 23: World Public Services Day. All around the world governments are attacking public services and the workers who help supply them. As well, a number of international trade agreements are jeopardizing the right of governments to provide public services instead of corporations.

Video: Nigerian public services union demands right to health in new constitution

03 June 2014

Watch this interview with Ayuba Wabba, President of the PSI-affiliated Medical and Health Workers Union of Nigeria (MHWUN). Brother Wabba has been selected to join a constitutional review committee considering health-related rights for the drafting of Nigeria's new constitution.

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.

Photos: Tax Justice & Anti-Corruption Forum, Argentina, April 2014

23 May 2014

More than 100 members of affiliate unions of Public Services International (PSI) came together from across the Americas for a Tax Justice and Anti-Corruption Forum in Buenos Aires, Argentina in late April 2014.

Video: Abu Kuntolo - AFRECON

13 May 2014

Abu Kuntolo is the General Secretary of the Health Services Workers' Union, Ghana