AHIK: Cooperation towards equality and inclusion

A joint international conference Towards equality and inclusion organized by ITUC-PERC and Azerbaijan Trade Unions Confederation (AHIK) took place in Baku, Azerbaijan on 26th of September following the meeting of PERC Women Committee.

The conference was addressed by AHIK Chairman, MP Sattar Mohbaliyev, as well as high profile officials responsible for the equality and inclusion policies in the country. The conference was also attended by representatives of the PERC Women Committee Trade Unions of Albania, Germany, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Turkey and Georgia, as well as responsible persons of the Pan European Regional Council (ITUC-PERC) as well as local trade union activists.

Welcoming the guests, AHIK chairman Sattar Mohbaliyev first spoke about the importance of the conference and the relevance of the topic, and about the strategy and consistent reforms carried out to protect women’s rights in the country. He said that the protection of human rights, achieving gender equality, especially increasing the activity of women and girls in society are the main issues of the AHIK. Long-term action programs based on the “Gender equality concept” adopted at AHIK are implemented.

He said with regret that despite such global development, women in the world are still subjected to violence in various forms: “women make up the majority of the informal economy. Equal wages and decent working conditions should apply to women in all cases. Employers should place the care economy at the center of their plans and budgets so that the concept of “unpaid work” disappears, and female workers are also represented in social contracts and collective agreements. We also urge our social partners to invest in the care economy and to adequately recognize the value of care work. This is also a fundamental factor for Sustainable Development.”

Mrs. Paula Simonetti, head of the Equality Department of the ITUC, gave detailed information about the situation in the world regarding women’s rights, highlighted the duties of trade unions in this direction, and touched on the importance of creating equal opportunities for women in all fields, including working conditions.

Comments and suggestions were also voiced at the event, and there was a broad exchange of views on the topic that would be taken into account while discussing future plans by trade unions and equality officers.