The Council of Global Unions, the voice of the global labour movement, has issued the following statement to mark May 1, 2010
On today of all days, trade unionists around the world demand fresh steps to reform the global economy in favour of social justice, investment in jobs and fairness in society. This is no time for business as usual.
Neo-liberal economists and reckless financial dealings have created a crisis that has put millions of people out of work and forced many more into precarious employment to survive. Social safety nets are being torn apart. Public spending that provides for cohesive communities is being savagely cut.
With all of this in mind, Global Unions call on policymakers and democrats everywhere to support a new paradigm of recovery and social justice that will:
• Reassert in government at all levels the primacy of public interest over private gain and ensure that the protection of citizens’ rights is made a cornerstone of social and economic development;
• Defend the rights of workers and trade unions;
• Mobilise for the creation of sustainable, secure and good quality jobs for all workers, that allow workers and their families to live in dignity;
• Ensure that social justice is a central mission of government and take concrete measures to reduce income disparities and increase equality, in particular gender equality;
• Eliminate market abuse through short-term speculation and manipulation of financial markets by imposing binding and effective regulation;
• Promote sustainable development with job-centred policies, effective social protections and reversal of global warming and environmental degradation;
• Renew commitment to public service values in society and enhance the contribution of quality public services to fairer and more efficient societies, and to finance these services through progressive systems of taxation that provide sufficient resources while improving social equity;
• Commit to education for all and provide resources needed to achieve the enrichment of society that comes from high quality education and training;
• Improve the quality of people’s lives by providing universal access to health care and other vital social welfare services, as well as such fundamental issues as clean water and adequate nutrition, and breathing new life into efforts to achieve the UN Millennium Development Goals.
May Day 2010 is a moment to change course, to meet the aspirations of workers and communities for a new beginning, to put to flight self-serving politics and corporate greed, and, above all, to build a new solidarity in society in support of people-centred values that will enrich the lives of all.
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