The conference means to activate trade union members, staff and officials involved in activities and policies for the equality of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) workers and
- enhance the expertise in trade union organisations on LGBTI actions, activities and policies in different cultural, social and political contexts by creating a space for exchange of experiences in these fields;
- create new incentives for co-operation between union organisations among themselves and union organisations and social movements and NGOs, and
- build a stronger and more stable commitment and involvement in the labour movement, at various levels, for LGBTI equal rights issues at work and at the labour market.
The conference will also increase the visibility of the labour movement as a fighter against discrimination and a defendant of equal rights. Moreover, we seek to empower the conference participants and want to encourage them to develop, use and spread their abilities and expertise within trade union (and other) organisations and at work.
The final goal is creating a situation in which no-one needs to hide her or his sexual orientation or gender identity in the process of seeking paid work, or at he workplace. A situation in which every worker is respected and is aware of the equal rights and can use them. Freedom at work!
The conference will focus on four questions:
- context: what are the crucial social, economic and legal trends that the trade union movement should take into consideration in its LGBTI policies?
- good practices: which experiences do we have in the trade union movement with LGBTI activities and policies and how can others use these, considering the changing circumstances?
- alliances: how can the trade union movement co-operate with other social movements and NGOs and increase its impact in the struggle for equal rights?
- sustainability: how can we ensure the ongoing exchange and use of these experiences in the future and inspire those parts of the trade union movement that have not been active yet in LGBTI activities? How can we build a network that helps both volunteers and trade union staff to continue, update and extend the actions, activities and policies on LGBTI workers’ rights? Which strategies can we use in the next decade?
We consider as our target group for this conference:
- active unionists involved in LGBTI policies and activities,
- trade union staff and leaders involved in these issues,
- members of LGBTI organisations who consider trade unions are (potential) allies in their work.
We also invite members of in-company LGBTI groups active in, and sponsored by companies or institutions.
We will strongly recommend and encourage the participating group to send (self-defined) female delegates and seek sexual diversity, gender balance and age balance at the conference