IDWF Congress gets underway in Uruguay
- IDWF Congress gets underway in Uruguay
- Close to 200 domestic workers' representatives from 47 organisations in some 42 countries across the world have come to the IDWN Congress in Montevideo, Uruguay. Here, we are taking the historic step of changing our international network IDWN into a formal international federation of domestic workers' organisations.
- Oct 26, 2013 to Oct 28, 2013 (Universal / UTC0)
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IDWF CONGRESS -
Close to 200 domestic workers' representatives from 47 organisations in some 42 countries across the world have come to the IDWN Congress in Montevideo, Uruguay. Here, we are taking the historic step of changing our international network IDWN into a formal international federation of domestic workers' organisations.
As our Chairperson Myrtle Witbooi said, it is an honour to be here in the very first country to ratify C189, the ILO Convention on Decent Work for Domestic Workers. We have been very warmly mentioned by many official bodies. The Congress opened with speeches from the Mayor of Montevideo Ana Olivera, the head of the National Institute of Women Beatriz Ramirez, the Chair of the National Institute for Social Security Ernesto Murro, and the Minister of Labour and Social Affairs Eduardo Brenta. The Minister spoke of the rights that domestic workers already have in the country, including labour inspection in private homes where health and safety problems are reported. But more rights are still needed, he said, such as the right to time off for union activities.
We also listened to domestic workers' testimonies from Gillian Atwell from Trinidad and Tobago, Josephine Zongo from Burkina Faso, Sonu Danuwar from Nepal, Adelina Diaz from Peru, and Antonia Peña from Colombia/USA. They spoke of the continuing challenges but also the successes, particularly the growth in domestic workers' organisations in their countries and regions.
Then there were interesting and inspiring presentations from the organisations that have been supporting us like the IUF, WIEGO, ITUC, and the ILO. They repeatedly say that our energies and successes are inspiring the wider labour movement, including other informal workers who are now putting their demands to the ILO. That so many now recognise that it is our work that sustains society is remarkable.
We are being hosted by the IUF Regional Office for Latin America, and local unions, the PIT-CNT and the Single Union of Domestic Workers of Uruguay (SUTD), to whom we are extremely grateful.