Ukraine: Trade Unions from Across Europe Endorse Five-Point Plan

Trade unions from across Europe have issued a call for a peaceful, efficient and socially-acceptable way out the crisis in Ukraine, pointing to the years of irresponsible policy-making, unaccountable economic management and systematic disregard of rights and freedoms.

The statement was issued from a meeting of the Pan-European Regional Council, which brings together ITUC affiliates from across Europe, including the Ukrainian trade union movement, as well as the members of the European Trade Union Confederation.

The five point plan calls for:

-  De-escalation of tensions, respect for the Ukrainian Constitution, territorial integrity and withdrawal of all armed forces;

-  Free and fair elections to shift to a genuine democratic political system, respect for the rights of all, and investigation of all acts of violence, illegal appropriation of public money and abuse of public office;

-  Economic assistance packages from the EU and international financial institutions, with a strong warning to avoid the discredited austerity approach pushed on EU member states by the “troika”;

-  Social dialogue with the guarantee that workers’ rights will be respected; and
-  Support for efficient and affordable public services, including priority for stability measures.

“This plan gives a clear pathway out of crisis and towards the kind of economy and society that the people of Ukraine want and deserve. Political leaders and the European and global institutions need to start work urgently on fulfilling their responsibilities to avoid further turmoil and help Ukraine to get on the right track,” said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow.

Bernadette Ségol, ETUC and PERC General Secretary, said: “Urgent action is needed to de-escalate the crisis in Ukraine and give hope for a better future to workers and their families who are the first victims of social, economic and political destabilisation. The European Union must play a full and generous role in bringing about a peaceful resolution that respects constitutional rights and international obligations. In particular, all minorities must be guaranteed their rights as set down in the European Convention on Human Rights to which all governments in Europe are party.”

The full version of the document can be found here