October brought a wave of solidarity and action across Europe with the Logistics Action Days (LDs), led by the European Transport Workers’ Federation (ETF). Spanning the continent with pivotal events in Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Spain, Sweden, and the UK, the LDs successfully amplified the voices of logistics workers, demonstrating the irreplaceable role they play in our daily lives and the economy.
At the heart of the LDs was the launch of the ETF’s Manifesto for Logistics Workers—a guiding document highlighting the rights and recognition logistics workers deserve. This comprehensive manifesto was unveiled and discussed in various formats, from workshops to in-person meetings, and reached an audience encompassing workers, employers, and political figures.
Madrid witnessed a milestone with over 100 participants, including workers, academics, and legal experts, converging for a workshop to discuss the impacts of AI and digitalization on logistics. The conversation, enriched by the presence of ETF’s Livia Spera, opened a dialogue on the challenges and opportunities that technological advancements bring to workers.
The successes of collective bargaining agreements (CBAs) were at the forefront in Scandinavia, with events in Copenhagen and Stockholm. There, achievements by 3F in Denmark and the Swedish Transport Workers Union were highlighted, alongside an enriching exchange with Johan Danielsson of the LO Sverige Confederation.
Belgium showcased the fruitful collaboration between unions and employers, with a notable event outside a DHL depot. Leaders like ETF’s President Frank Moreels and ETF’s GS Livia Spera acknowledged the effective CBA with DHL, setting a standard for others.
The UK’s discussions tackled the pressing issues of worker surveillance and the need for consent in the implementation of AI technologies. The sentiment was vividly captured by the description of the UK as “a nation of sheds,” reflecting the ubiquitous presence of logistics centres and the vital yet often overlooked workforce within.
In Italy, the demonstrations reached the echelons of government, with a demonstration outside the Ministry for Labour and a landmark meeting with Labour Minister Calderone. This engagement positioned Italian logistics workers at the forefront of national transport policy considerations and laid the groundwork for the renewal of the national collective agreement.
Culminating the LDs was a letter to The Commissioner for Transport Adina Valean, marking a significant step towards pan-European recognition of logistics workers’ contributions.
The Logistics Action Days did not just meet their objectives; they surpassed expectations by fostering unity, dialogue, and progress across nations. These events have fortified the foundation for future actions, ensuring that the pulse of logistics workers’ rights beats stronger than ever.