Action Plan of the TUI-PS&A
1 - CAPITALISM’S OFFENSIVE DEEPENS INEQUALITY AND INJUSTICE
The international situation is characterized by capitalism’s deepening crisis that has its core in the US and assumes special importance in Europe and affects all countries worldwide.
The nature and the sharpening of capitalism’s contradictions launched the world into a deep crisis that, at the same time confirms its inability to break free from the crises that afflict it cyclically, reveals a much bigger crisis, of a structural and systemic nature, that reveals that the overproduction and over-accumulation of wealth, is not the solution to the problems of humanity, but rather destroys the productive forces, worsens the exploitation of workers and peoples and attacks the sovereignty of every country by imposing measures that represent a huge civilizational regression. A setback that is, in itself, a creator of more and bigger crises.
The centralization and concentration of capital and wealth; the financialization of the economy; the systematic attack on the social functions of the State gained through the struggle of workers and peoples; the mercantilization of all spheres of social life, in a logic of privatizing anything that can generate greater income to capital; the attacks on international law and on the sovereignty of States; the centralization of political power and its submission to the economic power and to the militarization strategies of international relations, are components of capitalist policies that dominate most countries all over the world.
The exploitation of male and female workers worsens and intensifies throughout the world and is clearly marked by denial of rights and the abusive use of their workforce in return for increasingly lower wages.
The main points of this offensive are:
A cut in real wages;
The deregulation and increase in work time;
The deregulation of labour relations;
The spreading of precarious labour;
The appropriation of public funds and investments by private economic groups;
The increase of the retirement age;
The cut in retirement and pension benefits;
The destruction of public sector jobs;
The regression of social and labour rights;
The denial of the right to negotiation and collective bargaining and other collective rights of the workers.
An offensive that is expressed in the attack on class-oriented trade unionism and on collective bargaining, which seeks to divide and rule, which seeks to create divisions between public and private workers, which deepens discrimination and division of professions and fosters individual labour relations, to break the solidarity among the working class, and to weaken the trade unions.
An offensive that can only be stopped by the practice of a class-oriented and mass trade unionism and, by unity in action around what is common: the defence of the rights, interests and aspirations of the workers, for their emancipation and a society free from exploitation of man by man.
The processes of change that are being undertaken by some peoples and governments in Latin America bring us hope and the example that there are alternatives to the capitalist model. Despite the differences that appear in each country, inherent to their specific reality and the existing contradictions and obstacles, there are common aspects that enable us to speak of a different path, left-wing or progressive, with Cuba as a reference with its 50 years of revolutionary process and resistance to US imperialist offensive in that continent.
2 – THE RECONFIGURATION OF THE STATE AND THE DESTRUCTION
OF PUBLIC SERVICES
The reconfiguration of the State, placing it increasingly at the service of big business, is clearly one of the major goals of capitalist governments. The so-called "welfare state", created following World War II in answer to progressive advances in the Soviet Union to build socialism, and which brought major leaps in the social and economic development in the countries where it was introduced, quickly became a target to be dismantled after the fall of the USSR.
The social functions of the State - most importantly education, health and social security - and the principles of universality, solidarity and gratuitousness that are at their root result from the will, demands and struggle of workers and populations and are therefore their inalienable right. These principles enabled the access of workers and their children to Education, Health, Social Protection, in unprecedented levels. The social functions of the State extended to responsibility in the dissemination and democratization of culture, art, improved mobility, support for housing, child care, old age and disability.
The social functions of the State led to major social and economic developments, representing a key role in the reduction of deep social inequalities, and their destruction has led to a civilizational setback and worsening of the living conditions of workers and peoples.
This process of destruction of these achievements of the workers and peoples has been going on for more than two decades, with significant advances in recent years, with the use of arguments such as the sustainability of social protection systems, budgetary consolidation and the reduction of sovereign debt.
The privatization packages have cut across countries in regression. Initially, the attack was unleashed on the strategic sectors of the economy and development, such as energy and communications, where privatization represented the transfer of state monopolies to big business monopolies, with the accumulation of colossal profits for their shareholders, mostly foreign. At the same time, populations were subjected to free increase in rates, reduced coverage of services and the deterioration of their quality.
In the latest phase, Capital set its eyes on the social functions of the State, obtaining from governments at their service the privatization of Healthcare, Education and Social Security, the target of a deliberate debasement, through progressive and substantial cuts in their budgets; the closing of schools, hospitals, healthcare centres and other community-based services; the drastic cuts in social benefits provided to employed or unemployed workers, pensioners, children, youth and aged.
The shrinking of public services can also be witnessed by the attack on the rights of the Public Administration workers, starting with the right to employment and continuing with cuts in wages, freezing of careers, blocking of negotiation and collective bargaining; and limitations on the exercise of other collective rights, namely the right to strike; increase in working hours; the proliferation of precarious labour.
In many countries are changing the labour legislation to worsen the guaranties and rights of workers.
The deterioration of the social functions of the State has the sole purpose of privatization. Governments that squeeze financial, human and material resources in health and in education, that compress benefits, are the same who say that public services are not sustainable and unable to respond to the needs of the people. They then hand them to private capital. The State becomes minimal, of charity and aid.
3 - CREATE ALTERNATIVES WITH STRUGGLE
The class-oriented trade union movement, deeply committed to the struggle of the workers to defend their rights and public services, plays a vital role against the advance of capital. Employers, using all the instruments at their disposal, will try their best to deepen the exploitation of workers, trampling upon the achievements and freedoms of the people, to remain dominant and fatten their pockets.
Strengthening the unity and cohesion of workers around their mass and class-oriented trade unions in the workplace, as well as regional and international structures of the WFTU is crucial to the development of demands, actions of struggle and class awareness of the workers, and in particular of the workers in Public Administration and State-owned companies. This strengthening also means the unity in action of all workers and the fight against reformism and bourgeois ideology.
The claiming action of trade unions affiliated to the TUI - Public Services, should be guided, respecting the specificities of each country:
To demand modern, efficient, , quality, universal and free public services, to answer the real needs of the workers and people, against their outsourcing or privatization, refusing its use for the accumulation of profits by the oligarchy;
To demand the repeal of all rules affecting the rights of Public Administration workers in the countries where they were imposed;
To demand improvements in the working and living conditions of the Public Administration workers, namely better wages and work times compatible with their personal and family life;
• To end precariousness of employment contracts and have guarantees of stability in public employment to ensure the independence from capitalist governments, either in the central, regional and local administration, and in the State-owned business sectors;
To exercise the right to trade union freedom (association, meetings, demonstration, participation, etc.) in all workplaces and the right to negotiation and collective bargaining;
To implement social policies that answer the interests of the people and workers for a fairer distribution of wealth, with the rejection of charitable social policies;
For the rejection of all neoliberal policies and austerity that in various parts of the world seek to destroy the labour and social rights of workers and peoples;
To struggle for Peace and internationalist solidarity against war, militarism, aggression, interference and blockades that undermine the interests of the workers and peoples - in defence of national sovereignty, for the people to freely decide their destiny.
4 - STRENGHTEN TUI-PS AND THE INTERVENTION OF THE
CLASS-ORIENTED TRADE UNION MOVEMENT
TUI-Public Services is the sectorial structure of the World Federation of Trade Unions and carries out its actions in the sector of central, regional and local Public Administration, Public Services and the like on all continents, in conjunction with the overall action of the WFTU on a Continental and World level.
After the 12th Congress, held recently, the conditions for the realization of a more permanent and continuous intervention by TUI-PS were strengthened, in the sector and in terms of the WFTU, with strong possibilities of being involved in the actions of other organizations that, affiliated or not in other international organizations, show their willingness to jointly develop actions coinciding with the goals and principles of TUI-SP and WFTU.
To broaden unity in action has to be a chief concern of TUI-PS in the near future, while taking into account the specificities of each continent and region.
The increased influence of the class-oriented trade union movement in this sector depends on its ability to forward demands and action proposals that unite the workers and their organizations.
Unity is built with debate and proposal of themes with which the workers identify and TUI-Public Services should try to attract to its action all organizations that identify with its proposals.
To develop its activities, TUI-SP has to structure itself at the central level, but above all on every continent and region.
TUI-PS has to assume, increasingly, as an important instrument of action and struggle of the workers for their emancipation and to end exploitation
TUI-SP has to assume essentially as a structure of unity, mobilization, action and struggle of the workers, which will only be possible to materialize by fulfilling this role around the world, as it manages to extend its organized action.
Thus the defined lines of action are:
Structure TUI-Public Services, in every Continent/Region, with the General Council and Secretariat, creating Regional Secretariats and/or Federations, which should be extended to structures that identify with the proposals of the Class-oriented Trade Union Movement;
Seek support for a regular functioning of the TUI-Public Services bodies;
Increase membership in the TUI-Public Services, taking into account the realities of each continent.
5 - IMMEDIATE MEASURES OF ACTION
To be specific and regarding the main lines of work, intervention and struggle in the near future, TUI-Public Services, undertakes to make efforts in order to:
Continue during the next term, the discussion in every continent, in order to adapt the demands and action to the realities and specificities of each of them;
To achieve this goal, priority has to be given to the establishment of TUI-PS organizations in every continent/region, following the regional structure of the WFTU, with which it has to articulate all its action, so that, next year, there has to be an effort to carry out regional conferences, to achieve this;
Promote regional meetings of TUI-PS, mobilizing the support of WFTU organizations in these regions and defining the demands of class-oriented trade unions and their intervention and action in defence of workers' class interests;
Ensure a coordination with the activities of the WFTU, including International Day of Action, scheduled for October 3 of this year, with a mobilization around concrete problems and aspirations of the workers, according to the specificity in each continent/region;
Mobilize, in a framework of broadening unity in action, the workers of the sector worldwide, for convergent actions and which are based on the demands approved at the 12th. Congress, among which are the following:
Defence of the social functions of the State and public services;
Against the transfer by State monopolies to big private monopolies across privatizations
Improvement of the conditions of life and work, in particular, better pay and pensions and working hours compatible with personal and family life;
Against precariousness and for job stability;
For the right to the exercise of trade union activity, negotiation and collective bargaining;
Lisbon, April 1, 201