The TME is just a few days away and reaches an important point in the long-standing campaign working towards an ILO convention on violence against women and men in the world of work. The meeting is between nominated experts from the tripartite group; workers, employers and governments. Two members of the ITF women’s committee and the ITF women transport workers and equality officer will be there in Geneva, as well a number of ITF allies.  We want to help you feel more involved throughout the TME and will be working to bring the discussion and outcomes closer to you via this blog.

For more information about the meeting, to read the background paper and/or discussion points, follow this link to the ILO website.

The meeting that begins on Monday will be the first official step to decide what this legal instrument will look like and we have a real opportunity throughout this meeting to try and influence the language.  For example, to push for a convention rather than just a recommendation and to ensure the voice of women transport workers are heard loud and clear! We want to ensure the prevalence and high proportion of gender-based violence is fully recognised throughout the discussions and we want there to be an understanding that violence in the world of work is more likely to impact women workers and their children long-term due to structural inequalities in workplaces and society as a whole.

We want the impact of domestic violence to be recognised fully and for employers to take more responsibility about keeping workplaces and women transport workers safe. We want governments, employers and workers to see that perpetrators of domestic violence cost workplaces and that this is not an issue they can continue to ignore, from either a human rights or financial perspective.

We want women transport workers everywhere to feel there is an international instrument, support and guidance covering gender-based violence at work, which will provide trade unions with an opportunity to lobby their governments to ratify and to enforce implementation by employers. The ILO background paper suggests we have work to do to ensure the convention fully recognises the positive impact unions and collective bargaining can have on society when it comes to preventing and responding to gender-based violence at work. We believe the role of women’s advocates in workplaces are vital ones and we are working to develop a global programme based on the successful and well-established model in the Canadian union, Unifor. The Unifor women’s advocate programme has changed responses to gender-based violence at work for the better, improving prevention, employer policy and support services for survivors. To find out more, read our factsheet on women’s advocacy.

What does the ILO Convention mean to you? We want to know! We’ll be sending out a campaign newsletter tomorrow to support you to share your ideas on Twitter and Facebook. Follow this blog to join our mailing list and don’t miss out! Look for a blue tab at the bottom right of your screen.

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