Confronting Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), often simply called depression, is the theme for this year’s World Health Day on 7 April. MDD is a mental disorder characterized by at least two weeks of persistent sadness and a loss of interest in normally enjoyable activities accompanied by an inability to carry out daily activities.
The Conclusions of the Session 61 of the United Nations Commission on the Legal and Social Status of Women recognised important objectives on PSI's policy agenda, although there were also gaps on issues that the global union will continue to champion tirelessly.
Today, 22 March, World Water Day, PSI's General Secretary Rosa Pavanelli states the importance of tax-funded public water and sanitation for all, but especially for realizing women's rights. In an interview*, Pavanelli talks about the major challenges in achieving this goal.
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.
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 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.
In 2015, the World Women's Committee (WOC) decided to make Equal Pay the main theme of its celebration of International Women's Day in 2016. PSI has already achieved a lot on this issue, as is widely recognised. It took the lead in calling on its affiliates, the global union federations, the ILO, governments and women's organisations to defend economic rights. PSI is now internationally recognised as a union that defends women's rights at work and in society in general.
The Forum, which was held in Bogota, Colombia, on 9 December 2014, was attended by representatives of Colombian government agencies and public service unions from Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru, who shared their experiences of fighting corruption and promoting transparency in public services.
Before an audience of more than 140 women members of the PSI, the President of Chile, Michelle Bachelet, called on the organisation to continue fighting for approval of an ILO resolution on the elimination of violence against women at the workplace and in public employment.
PSI affiliates represent hundreds of thousands of educational support and cultural workers throughout the world, many of whom work without job security, fair compensation and benefits, or recognition that their services are vital to ensuring high quality public education and culture for all citizens. The jobs of these workers are on the frontlines of the privatization and casualization struggle within the education and cultural sector, and many of them face challenges in pursuing their basic freedom to form a union and collectively bargain their terms and conditions of service.
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, is the first ever global conference to provide a critical perspective on the TISA.
It will bring together leading global experts, trade unions from the public and private sector, civil society and government representatives from around the world to share information about the TISA. They will discuss the threats posed to public services, democracy and workers, and plan action to oppose its harmful elements.
Interview with David Boys (Public Services International and appointed to the UN Secretary General's Advisory Board on Water and Sanitation - UNSGAB) at the Water Operators' Partnerships conference in Amsterdam, 2 November 2011.