New ways to develop trade union communications

29-30 September ITUC-PERC held a Youth Conference on new ways to develop trade union communications. It took place in Baku (Azerbaijan) on invitation of AHIK and was part of PERC capacity building strategy within Union-to-Union project. The Conference gathered young union activists from PERC affiliates and allied organisations in Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Russia, Ukraine and Uzbekistan. AHIK Vice-President, Javanshir Alhasov greeted the participants and pointed to the crucial role of communications in trade union development.

The main expert of the event, Alexander Shershukov, FNPR Secretary and editor-in-chief of Russian Union newspaper “Solidarnost” offered a number of issues for discussion in his speech and then chaired a roundtable exchange on What we communicate to union members and public and why we are often not listened to?
The first day was closed with a presentation by Yuliya Ryzhenkova, “Solidarnost” web-site editor, on new technologies to promote information and organise collective actions on-line.

The second day was dedicated to ways of streamlining communications flow throughout organisational structure of the unions, as well as opportunities for youth to promote union information internationally, in particular with the help of ITUC campaigns and instruments.

Participants also had a group work session, where they worked on articulation of the new low-budget ways to promote unions identity, efficient communications flow between trade unions of different countries as well as new creative ways to organise union actions.

They pointed out to the importance of the broader engagement of partner organisations and civil society, personal talks and creative actions, intensive use of social media and on-line conferencing facilities for networking and sharing best practices.