The influences on the working lives of PCS members now extend far beyond the borders of the UK and Ireland.
Economic crises don't respect national boundaries, as we are all engaged in the struggle to protect our public services. PCS has built up good relationships with sister trade unions around the globe and through European and global trade union federations to promote and protect our members' interests and concerns.
In many countries trade unionists risk intimidation or jail for active membership of a union. Solidarity is the very basis of trade unionism, and it shouldn't stop at national borders.
PCS is proud to campaign for human rights and against inequality and injustice.
Solidarity with Polish women
On September 22, the top court in Poland decreed that access to abortion throughout the country would be further restricted. This is only the latest rolling-back of Polish women’s reproductive rights by the ruling Law and Justice Party.
PCS believes in women and girls’ right to free, safe abortion. Both in the UK and around the world. Banning access to abortion is both wrong in principle and in practice. It takes away women’s control over their bodies and will have the effect of forcing many women to seek unsafe abortions at home or travel abroad to seek costly ones.
The ruling in Poland has sparked huge protests in the country centred around the slogan #strajkkobiet (Women’s Strike), including tens of thousands in Warsaw, and throughout Europe.
Zita Holbourne, PCS National Vice President and chair of PCS International Committee and National Women's Forum: "The majority of PCS members are women. We are affiliated to Abortion Rights UK. We believe in a woman's right to choose and that this is a human right. We stand in full solidarity with our sisters in Poland who are opposing the recent ruling in the Polish courts further restricting access to abortion. All women and girls globally have the right to control their own bodies, this is not a matter for the judiciary or politicians to decide on. Solidarność from PCS union. "
Culture and cultural public services: Joint PCS, CGT and FP CGIL Statement
The Covid pandemic has had a huge impact on the Arts & Culture sector, with hundreds of redundancies affecting PCS members. The PCS Culture Group has come together with sister trade unions CGT Culture (France) and FP CGIL Culture (Italy) to produce a joint statement.
Read the Joint PCS, CGT and FP CGIL Statement
The joint declaration takes stock of the economic and social threats directly linked to the pandemic, including its major impact on tourism, deregulation of workers’ rights, a rise in precarious work and the increase of job losses and privatisations. Its demands include a transformed and reinforced public cultural service, decent, stable employment and working conditions.
Zita Holbourne, PCS vice-president and International Committee chair said: “Covid has destroyed lives and now livelihoods are being destroyed including in our culture sector across Europe with huge impacts on equality, access to the arts and culture and a knock on impact on multi genre artists who work with cultural centres on a self-employed basis. There are disproportionate impacts on equality groups also, particularly women, black and minority ethnic and migrant workers in the sector. It is crucial that we work together to save our culture sector, to preserve arts which play an important role in healing and responding to the trauma, mental health and isolation impacts of the pandemic and to protect workers and the sector as a whole.”
Freedom for Ocalan Campaign: eBook 'The Time Has Come’
PCS is affiliated to the trade union Freedom for Ocalan campaign. The campaign is supported by 14 major UK trade unions, and is demanding the release of all Kurdish political prisoners, end to the campaign of intimidation and violence against trade unionists and the opposition of any invasion of the free Kurdish cantons of Rojava.
The original publication explains the urgency of the campaign to free Ocalan and how transformative Abdullah Ocalan's just release would be for region and as the first step to securing a much-needed peace. Learn about:
- Who is Abdullah Ocalan, and why is he such a significant figure in Turkey and beyond?
- The history of the Kurds and their historical and modern-day struggles for liberty.
- The Turkish state's attacks on the trade union movement and civil society.
- Rojava and the women revolution
The Freedom for Ocalan campaign urges trade unionist to read the free publication, to gain a better understanding why trade union branches and committees are encouraged to support this urgent campaign.
Persecution campaign against the Uyghur people
The PCS National Executive Committee carried a motion expressing its alarm over the Chinese government’s mounting campaign of persecution against the Uyghur people. They and people of other national minorities such as Kazakhs and Uzbeks face arbitrary detention on a mass scale in concentration camps
The Uyghur are a people of Muslim and Turkic heritage, and other Central Asian Muslim-majority people within the Chinese borders. The arbitrary detention of the Uyghurs and people of other national minorities such as Kazakhs and Uzbeks on a mass scale in concentration camps continues and is now increasingly reported by media around the world and Amnesty International.
We express our solidarity with the Uyghurs and all oppressed people, workers and students in China fighting for democratic and social rights; and call for these outrages to end immediately.
The NEC also resolved to campaign for the rights of the Uyghur people to live free from arbitrary detention and state harassment, and to demand the closure of the internment camps in Xinjiang region; and explore political avenues to speak up on the issue of human rights for the Uyghur people and particular to put pressure on the government to support the Uyghurs and condemn the actions of the Chinese state.
Read more on Amnesty International's website.