DECISIONS FOR LIFE project planning meeting, Kiev, 26-27 January, 2009

On 26-27 January 2009 the Union Federation of Ukraine (FPU) hosted the planning meeting within the framework of the “Decisions for Life” project. The meeting was aimed at presenting the project “Decisions for Life”, its aims and tasks. Among the participants of the meeting were representatives of 3 National Unions Centers – FPU, KSPU and VOST, representatives of the ITUC, the ILO, the Wage Indicator Foundation.

Marieke Koning (ITUC) started the seminar with a short introductory session during which the participants briefly introduced themselves and the organizations they represent.

The next session was aimed at presenting the project conception, its aims and tasks, target groups and directions of work.

Decisions for Life focuses on 12 countries of Europe, Asia, Latin America. At the CIS countries the project covers Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Ukraine. The Project partners are: ITUC, UNI, Amsterdam University, Wage Indicator Foundation. The duration of the project is 2,5 years.

The project aims are:

- To raise awareness among young female workers concerning future employment opportunities and career possibilities, family building and the work-family balance.
- Promoting equal opportunities at the labor market.
- Providing information on possibilities and rights for working women.

To reach the above-mentioned aims it’s planned to make researches: careful studying of labor law, analysis of rules which are used by local companies and TNC, studying of collective agreements, working conditions etc. The main activities will be trade union campaigns which will include face-to-face meetings, trainings, workshops, informational exchange. Besides it’s planned to create in each country the webpage. Thanks to campaigns and webpage women will be better informed and that will allow them to take carefully thought out decisions concerning their lives.

The project target group is young women aged 20-30 of public service sector.

The meeting was followed up by the presentation of the Wage Indicator Foundation made by Pauline Osse.

Wage Indicator Foundation was created in 2003 and by now works with 45 countries all over the world. Its aims are to share and compare wage information, to contribute to a transparent labor market, to provide free, accurate wage data through Salary Checks on national Wage Indicator websites, to collect wage data through web surveys.

The webpage was presented. With the help of this webpage it’s possible to compare salaries of people working in the same branch all over the world.

The creation of the similar web pages in Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan will allow to involve maximum women at the trade union movement of these countries. The web pages will contain the useful information for young women who would like to make career.

The first working day was finished by a discussion. The participants exchanged examples of different sorts of campaigns.

The second day started with the analysis of the previous working day. Then the participants were grouped into two groups with the task to identify the main problems of working women. The second part of the task was to think about future campaigns. How to solve problems with the help of the project campaigns?

Groups reports:

Group 1.

It’s expected to work on 3 directions:

1st block. Work and family balance. To initiate a discussion: how to have good job and good salary having family responsibilities.

2nd block. Maternity protection. Campaign for ratification by Ukraine of the ILO convention № 183.

3rd block. Equal opportunities at labor market. To initiate discussions, meeting, questioning.

Group 2.

Before solving problems it’s necessary to identify them. For this purpose we need researches.

It’s important to create and train a team of women who can organize shot meetings and interviews with young female workers.

Besides there is a necessity to have training on how to find and use information.

The work in groups was followed up by a discussion. The main conclusion of the discussion: the project campaign belongs to women involved in the project. It’s exactly them who think campaigns conception and realise it. And at the beginning it’s important to understand what results we expect to have at the end.

After the planning meeting there was a shot meeting of 3 National Union Centers – FPU, KVPU and VOST with ITUC representatives. The main decisions: till the end of January create a project coordination team – 1 representative from each federation plus project coordinator. The project coordinating team drafts the campaign plan and budget till February 15. The project coordination team has regular meetings and is responsible for the project realization in the country.