ETF’s Acting General Secretary Addresses ETUC Congress

22 May 2019

Livia Spera took to the podium with a strong message for delegates and Europe. “We are raising a red card to the European Commission. We can’t build a fairer Europe while transport workers are second class citizens!”

The European Trade Union Confeeration (ETUC) is the top level of the European trade union movement, and this year they are holding their Congress. The ETUC Congress 2019, taking place under the slogan A fairer Europe for workers, is the moment for a fundamental debate on the Action Programme for the upcoming four years. There will also be votes on a number of amendments to the ETUC Constitution to make the organisation fit for the future.

Over 600 delegates from all European countries are present, and the ETF is attedning with a delegation of 15 participants. We are a committed ETUC member, and we will ensure that transport workers’ concerns are reflected in all debates and decisions taken. We are joined by a number of colleagues who are here as delegates of their national confederations.

On the second day our Acting General Secreatry addressed the Congress with a clear message. The outgoing European Commission has let down workers in many ways, particularly in the damage they have caused to EU social dialogue. Even when the EU has improved the rules, transport workers have found themselves treated as second class citizens and excluded. Unions must be bold in setting and imposing their agenda, combining political work with firm actions where necessary. The success of our Fair Transport Europe campaign, and the impact we’ve had on Ryanair and the EU Mobility package, show that we can do it!

Alongside the ETUC leadership and representatives of their affiliate organisations, guests at the Congress include the Portuguese prime ministers, the outgoing head of the European Commission and the President of the International Trade Union Confederation.

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