PERC HTUR Network workshop for Albania and Kosovo, Tirana, 5-6 May 2010

On 5 - 6 May 2010 in Tirana, Albania, 15 trade union representatives of ITUC affiliates from Albania and Kosovo took part in a workshop organised by the PERC and the ITUC Human and trade union rights (HTUR) department. During those 2 days, main discussions focused on the participation of the affiliates from the 2 countries to the PERC HTUR network of HTUR focal persons and the development of a HTUR action plan for the promotion and the defence of trade unions rights.

The HTUR department presented the general HTUR mandate and action plan as well as HTUR activities carried out in the PERC region through the PERC HTUR network launched in September 2009. Then participants met in working groups to identify ways to tackle these problems as efficiently as possible through the network.

In addition to sharing ideas on how to enhance affiliates’ participation to the ITUC HTUR activities, the participants exposed the main difficulties they were facing in their countries to ensure the adoption of labour laws in line with international standards as well as to fight against violations of their trade union and labour rights. Main problems include the difficulties to organise and to bargain collectively as well as the overall pressure put on trade union representatives in private sectors, the non- functioning of National labour or social and economic councils, labour courts and labour inspection.

Participants acknowledged the need for a HTUR focal person per affiliate in charge of following HTUR issues and activities. Affiliates’ commitment to participate in HTUR activities such as the contribution to the Annual Survey of violations of trade union rights, the solidarity actions (protest letters and appeals) and the ILO work (comments to the Committee of Experts on the application of conventions – CEACR) was considered as a priority. To help affiliates in fulfilling their commitments, it was pointed out that some documentation could be translated into national languages (this would also help disseminating the work at the national level) and that some additional training could be provided. The idea of organising some national activities was also launched.

Reported by:
Enisa Salimović – ITUC / PERC SEE Office Sarajevo, and Nadine Thevenet – ITUC HTUR Department, Brussels