Background information


In April 2000, in the Congress Statement on "Making Vision into Reality: Priorities for the ICFTU for the 21st Century", the International Confederation of Free Trade Unions (now merged into ITUC) made its first reference to combating discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.

In its first clause it says:
"We want to achieve the full equality trade unions have worked long to attain, with a society free from discrimination based on race, colour, creed, political opinion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, health or age."

Under "Mobilising for Equality at Work" it says in clause 16:
"Women are joining the world's workforce at an accelerating pace but mostly at the bottom in low paid, low status, precarious jobs. The economic and social cost of discrimination, particularly against women but also on the ground of race, colour, creed, political opinion, sexual orientation, disability and age, is incalculable. Unions are fighting discrimination because it is wrong but we are also convinced that promoting equality benefits the whole society by realising the productive potential of people who are unfairly denied decent work."
  • [...]
  • "The ICFTU will also strive to make sure action to overcome discrimination at work - including against migrants or on the basis of race, colour, national extraction, sexual orientation, disability, or age - is given the highest political commitment and the financial resources to match. And the ICFTU will lead by example, acting as a catalyst for change in the trade union movement, to promote solidarity in diversity, as all workers must have their place in our organisations."

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