Your daily round up of trade union news from around the world.  Thirty thousand people marched in Lisbon on Saturday to protest against the bailout plan agreed between the Portuguese government and the IMF-EU-ECB troika. This ‘pact of aggression’ has r …

Walton Pantland

Your daily round up of trade union news from around the world. 

Thirty thousand people marched in Lisbon on Saturday to protest against the bailout plan agreed between the Portuguese government and the IMF-EU-ECB troika. This ‘pact of aggression’ has resulted in attacks on public services, rising unemployment and increased inequality.

In South Africa, students at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg won the reinstatement of 17 unfairly dismissed catering workers after embarking on a hunger strike. The catering workers were members of health and education union NEHAWU.

In Nepal, Dorje Khatri of UNITRAV – the Union of Trekking Travel Rafting and Airline workers – climbed Mount Everest with the flag of the new global union federation IndustriALL.

Trade unions in Rwanda are pushing for the minimum wage to be raised to 1,500 Rwandan Francs per day. The legal minimum has been 100 Francs since 1974. The unions are pushing for an even higher minimum wage for workers in the city of Kigali, where the cost of living is higher.

From Egypt, the Global Post reports that the revolution that toppled Hosni Mubarak started not in Tahrir Square but among striking textile workers in Mahalla in 2008. The article goes on to analyse the growing power of unions in Egyptian society. Also in Egypt, a strike by postal workers will affect more than 500 post offices across the country.

In the UK, the two largest teachers’ unions, the NASUWT and the NUT, will jointly ballot for industrial action. This could result in hundreds of thousands of teachers going on strike in the autumn. Also in the UK, Unite members at API Foils in Livingston, Scotland, are embarking on strike action after the company tore up a collective agreement that had been in place for 30 years. Unite feels that this corporate behaviour is a foretaste of what will come if the Coalition government implements the controversial proposals of Tory donor Adrian Beecroft.

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Walton Pantland

South African trade unionist living in Glasgow. Loves whisky, wine, running and the great outdoors. Walton did an MA in Industrial Relations at Ruskin, Oxford, and is interested in how trade unions use new technology to organise.

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