The GLI International Summer School successfully concluded on Friday 13 July after a week of intense debate and discussion on the politics of the international trade union movement. There were 84 participants from 26 countries, with delegations from four Global Union Federations and numerous national unions.
A wonderful week … bringing together the right people to envision and start to plan a stronger, transformative global labor movement. Priscilla Gonzalez, Domestic Workers United, USA. Company, comradeship and inspiration. Solidarity for ever! Scot Walker, Unite, UK. An Amazing week! Sarah Woolley, Bakers, Food & Allied Workers, UK. I left the richer for attending. May all your contribution to the rights of workers and the masses of the working class people and peasants across the world bear fruit. Blessing Karumbidza, South Africa. I am so thankful for the opportunity I had to meet so many people and be part of a group that is going to make the difference. Sandy Cijntje, Building & Woodworkers International, Curacao. Rich and inspiring discussions. Krastyo Petkov, CITUB, Bulgaria. One of the best union events I have ever been to. Walton Pantland, Union Solidarity International. An enormous and very successful engagement for our first international Summer School.…”Ce n’est qu’un début, continuons le combat!”. Vasco Pedrina, Unia, Switzerland. A fantastic event … it’s just a pity that we can’t send all our people on courses like this! … Susan George hit the nail on the head when she said that although we know we are on the side of the angels, we don’t defend our ideals and fight the battle of ideas. And yet we have such a depth of knowledge and experience in our movement that we need to more fully exploit. Bert Schouwenburg, GMB.
Several of the participants are now posting their own reports from the school. See for example http://usilive.org/global-labour-institute-summer-school/ (English), www.kpetkov.eu (Bulgarian), http://www.lecourrier.ch/100489/syndicats_sans_frontieres (French), and posts on the GLI Facebook page.
We’re very sorry that some people couldn’t make it because of airfares and the disgraceful immigration policies and procedures of the British government. Many others had to be disappointed when we ran out of physical space at the venue.
The team of rapporteurs are now busy editing the thousands of words of notes, presentations and written contributions, aiming to produce a comprehensive education and discussion document to capture the event. A big thankyou to all who made it possible, particularly Unite, RMT, Unia and the brilliant staff at Northern College.
There are now many ideas for future activity – international summer schools, research projects, and plans for online learning and debate. Watch this space…