Further, women’s labour force participation rates are stagnating at 26 percentage points lower than those of men; the gender pay gap remains at an average of some 20 per cent; women continue to suffer from segregation in low-quality and undervalued jobs and to be over-represented in informal and non-standard forms of work, as well as unpaid care work. The significance of the impact of unpaid care work on women’s effective labour force participation is gaining increasing public and policy attention.
The decision of the 7th meeting of the ITUC women’s committee to launch a global campaign to ensure 30% women representation in decision making structures of all ITUC affiliates was adopted by the ITUC General Council in October 2013.
The 3rd ITUC Congress in May 2014 endorsed the Count Us In campaign and extended its scope to include an economic agenda for women. This latter will include measures to increase women’s effective labour force participation through national and international advocacy on adequate public investment in the care sector; the creation of decent jobs in the care sector - including the setting of national job targets by governments; and organising around care issues.
The PERC regional meeting on Count us in campaign gathered representatives of national women’s committees in Albania, Bulgaria, Georgia, Ukraine, Russia, Turkey, Moldova , Hungary and Belgium.
The objectives of the regional meeting were: to assess and strengthen national action plans and strategies aimed at achieving 30% or more representation of women in leadership positions and to achieve a significant increase of women membership rates ; to strengthen the regional action plan aimed at achieving 30% or more representation of women in leadership positions among a maximum number of affiliates ; to strengthen national and regional action plans aimed at achieving a significant increase of women trade union members. Presentation of campaign activities have been made by all participants in the meeting; the results of the Count us in campaign in the PERC region are very promising and facilitate the strengthening of the trade union structures in the region. The ITUC and ETUC experts Marieke Koning and Cinzia Sechi presented the state of affairs as concerns tea campaign activities and the representation of women in trade unions in the European countries.
The Count us in regional meeting was followed by a short meeting of the PERC Women’s Committee; the first part was dedicated to the preparation of the General Assembly of PERC which will take place 15 December in Brussels and the second part to discussion concerning the program and action plan of the PERC Women’s Committee for the next year.