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Showing blog posts tagged with Africa

Swaziland: Textile Workers Sickened from a Dangerous Chemical

Swaziland: Textile Workers Sickened from a Dangerous Chemical

Workers continue to be sickened at a Swazi textile factory where dozens of workers required hospitalization earlier this month after the plant began using the dangerous chemical butyl acetate to clean clothing stains. The workers, who went to the hospital at their own expense, reported chest pains, severe headaches, vomiting and bleeding, and some collapsed.

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As Summit Concludes, U.S. and African Unions Pledge Partnership, Push Pro-Worker Policies

As Summit Concludes, U.S. and African Unions Pledge Partnership, Push Pro-Worker Policies

Last week African trade union leaders from across the continent converged on Washington, D.C., to push U.S. and African leaders to focus on decent work, worker rights and job creation during the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit. They challenged the growing “Africa Rising" narrative, which mainly focuses on macro-level economic growth, trade opportunities and growing consumer markets for international corporations, and sought to refocus the debate on policy changes that would improve the lives of working families.

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Better Ways to Bring Democracy, Workers' Rights and Opportunity to Sub-Saharan Africa

Better Ways to Bring Democracy, Workers' Rights and Opportunity to Sub-Saharan Africa

The AFL-CIO and the Solidarity Center released a new policy brief Thursday on how to improve the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) and ensure that it delivers on its ambitious goals of supporting democratic governance, enhancing civil society, combating corruption and promoting the rule of law in Sub-Saharan Africa.

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On International Mandela Day, Lessons for U.S. and African Leaders

On International Mandela Day, Lessons for U.S. and African Leaders

Today marks Nelson Mandela International Day, a celebration of the great South African leader’s birth, life and legacy. It was launched in 2008 with a unanimous decision by the U.N. General Assembly. Mandela dedicated his life to fighting for equality, justice, democracy and the dignity of working people. He encouraged us all to act together to change the world for the better. And around the world today, people are committing to service projects in his honor.

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Unions Face Uncertainty After Flawed Zimbabwe Election

As results continue to be announced in Zimbabwe’s national elections, trade unions and other civil society partners are feeling a sense of dejection, as it appears that not only will Robert Mugabe continue his 33-year rule of the country for another five years, but his party ZANU-PF will secure a two-thirds parliamentary majority.

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Police Open Fire on Protesting Mine Workers in South Africa

An on-going industrial conflict escalated into tragedy yesterday as police opened fire on a group of protesting workers at the Marikana Mine and surrounding area in Rustenburg, South Africa, about 50 miles from Johannesburg. The platinum mine is owned by U.K.-based Lonmin. The violence has taken 38 lives and injured more than 75 people.

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Solidarity Center 2011: From Arab Spring to Domestic Workers' Rights Worldwide

Solidarity Center 2011: From Arab Spring to Domestic Workers' Rights Worldwide

From the Arab uprisings to the international recognition of the rights of domestic workers, 2011 was a turning point for millions of workers around the globe. The AFL-CIO's Solidarity Center, whose mission is to support workers in building independent trade unions around the world, partnered with workers and their unions as they organized for better working conditions, greater social protections, more fair labor laws and increased democracy and equity in their countries.

In its just-released 2011 Annual Report, the Solidarity Center shows how its staff in Africa, Asia, Europe, the Middle East and the Americas partnered with workers and their unions organizing for better working conditions and for the fundamental rights denied to them.

Here are a few highlights.

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Nigerian Labor Activist: I Want Government to be Accountable

Nigerian Labor Activist: I Want Government to be Accountable

Sessi Agnes Funmi has the simple goal of awakening the “sleeping giant.” That’s how her Nigerian union has been tagged, she said. And
it’s starting to work.

Funmi is the head of the Lagos State University Branch of the Senior Staff Association of Nigerian Universities. The union has about
8,040 members, who are the non-teaching professional university staff. The members include nurses, physicians, administrators and senior housekeepers and security officers.

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Join AFT in Alleviating ‘Children’s Famine’ in Somalia

AFT President Randi Weingarten urged President Obama to “help marshal the humanitarian aid needed to halt the advance of the apocalyptic ‘children’s famine’ spreading through Somalia and neighboring nations in the Horn of Africa.”

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