PSI affiliate in the US, AFT, condemns the US government’s plans to make cuts in the education budget. President Trump and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos want to eliminate more than 20 federal K-12 programs, including after-school and summer programs that serve 1.6 million children.
In commemoration of World Refugee Day, Public Services International (PSI) calls for solidarity with the millions of refugees worldwide, underscoring that quality public services are vital in promoting their human rights, inclusion and integration in societies.
The issue of tax havens has been on the public stage for several years now. The phenomenon has become more widespread over the last twenty years. Following the recent financial crisis, western countries have made a commitment to tackle tax havens, but as could be expected, little concrete action has been taken.
The Women's Rights and Tax Justice Convening kicks off on 13 June in Bogotá, Colombia with a conversation between Rosa Pavanelli, PSI General Secretary, Jose Antonio Ocampo, member of ICRICT and Chairman of the Board of Banco del República (Central Bank of Colombia) and Maria Nieves Rico, Director of Gender Affairs from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL).
On 13 June, Rosa Pavanelli speaks at the Women's Rights and Tax Justice Convening in Bogota, Colombia during the dialogue session between PSI's General Secretary, Jose Antonio Ocampo, member of ICRICT and Chairman of the Board of Banco del República (Central Bank of Colombia) and Maria Nieves Rico, Director of Gender Affairs from the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL). See the full speech here.
The PSI North America Binational meeting was held on March 4, 2016 in Ottawa and hosted by the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC). Robyn Benson (PSAC), the Canadian titular, and Candice Owley (American Federation of Teachers-AFT), the United States titular, co-chaired the meeting. This meeting followed the Canadian SUBRAC and the United States SUBRAC, both held on March 3, 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.
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.
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.
On 9 October, the people of Uruguay celebrated the tenth anniversary of the victorious referendum in defence of water that forced a change to the constitution. Amendments to the constitution recognised water as a basic human right and made it impossible to privatise water resources and services.