Tag Archives: PPE

Iraq: Woodworkers hold a week of activities to mark 28 April and stop Covid 19 – GTUCWW

The General Trade Union of Construction and Wood Workers in Iraq join BWI’s workers’ memorial week campaign. Protect Workers! Stop Covid-19! #BWI2020IWMD #iwmd20
حملة النقابة العامة لعمال وموظفي البناء والأخشاب في العراق

Ghana: CBMWU calls on government to protect workers’ safety and rights

Message from Ghana’s Construction and Building Materials Workers Union on the International Workers’ Memorial Day on 28 April.

#BWI2020IWMD  #iwmd20

Ukraine: Unions demand employers protect workers from Covid 19 [Video]

Video message from Ukraine, Lesia Gusak, PROFBUD, ERWC member PROTECT WORKERS! STOP COVID-19!

“On the eve of International Workers Memorial Day, I would like to remind everyone that today more then ever our health is in our hands! Here, in Ukraine, at the CRH factory, we work without OSH accidents already for 3509 days. COVID-19 requires us to comply with additional safety measures, and we should do so, and demand from employers necessary PPE! Stay healthy!”


Montenegro: SGIGMCG demands workers are fully protected during the COVID-19 pandemic

Nenad Markovic, President of the Trade Union of Construction and Building Materials Workers of Montenegro (SGIGMCG) demands that workers should be fully protected during the COVID-19 pandemic. He said that PPE equipment, physical distance protocols, safe transportation and other health measures should be provided to construction workers.

“The situation is serious. But through the joined efforts of government, unions and employers, we can ensure the health and safety of all, and find a way out of this crisis.”
#BWI2020IWMD #iwmd20

Philippines: 28 April activities to fight for the the protection of front line health workers

Join us as we light candles and remember the 26 Filipino health care professionals who died due to COVID-19. Join us as we light candles to set fire our commitment to continue fighting for the protection, health and safety of our frontline workers.

Save the date, April 28! Let us light candles to remember and mourn. Let us light candles to rage and fight!

#IWMD20 #ProtectHealthWorkers #MassTestingNowPh

We also invite everyone to watch AMBAGAN: Artists in Solidarity Concert on April 28, 6:30 pm. Join us as we offer songs and poems for our health workers. Each song is a call for free mandatory testing to all health workers. Each poem is a call for the immediate distribution of PPE to all health workers. Each message is a call for their protection, health and safety. This concert is brought to you by Concerned Artists of the PhilippinesAltermidya – People’s Alternative Media Network and IOHSAD Philippines.

#ArtistsFightBack #NagluluksaLumalaban #WeMournWeFight

Pakistan: Hunger strikes, occupations and work stoppages to mark 28 April

Healthworkers in Pakistan are on their thirteenth day of hunger strike and occupying hospitals to try and get proper PPE.
11 am, tomorrow: walk out of work and stay out for the day – support key workers taking action for PPE Reel News

UK: Preparing for the return to work outside the home – TUC

Preparing for the return to work outside the home

Summary of recommendations

This TUC report, Preparing for the return to work outside the home: a trade union approach, sets out what we believe the government must do now to ensure a safe transition from lockdown, looking at how to safely return to work outside the home, the enforcement measures needed to protect workers, and how best to protect workers’ livelihoods.

  • The government must ensure that workers’ mental health and wellbeing is prioritised alongside physical safety.
  • The government must run a public information campaign to ensure working people can be confident that health and safety at work is a priority as they return to work.
  • Every employer must carry out a specific Covid-19 risk assessment.
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) must be provided where necessary, and no-one should be asked to re-use PPE inappropriately.
  • Government must provide specific advice and protection for those groups most at risk.
  • The EHRC must ensure that the return to work strategy seeks to prevent this disproportionate impact and complies with the public sector equality duty.
  • Unions should be consulted when the government prepares sector-specific guidance, and when employers seek to implement it.
  • The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) must act quickly to sanction employers that do not risk-assess for Covid-19 or fail to provide safe working arrangements.
  • The HSE must run a public information campaign to ensure workers know their rights.
  • No worker should face a sanction for refusing to work in an unsafe workplace.
  • Government must ensure the job retention scheme continues to protect jobs.
  • Those who lose their jobs must be protected by a strengthened safety net.
  • We need decent sick pay for all
  • Government must ban zero-hours contracts, tackle false self-employment, and guarantee all workers day-one employment rights.

    read full list of recommendations

Download full report (pdf)


UK: Remember Covid-19 dead on 28 April – UNISON

IWMD will give us the chance to remember the workers who have died because of COVID-19

Tuesday 28 April is International Workers’ Memorial Day, when we remember all those who have died because of their work – and renew our pledge to fight for the living.

In the year of coronavirus, this day of commemoration has never been more important. And that is why UNISON is asking the country to observe a minute’s silence, to remember all the health, care and other key workers who have already lost their lives to COVID-19.

The campaign for a minute’s silence at 11am next Tuesday was launched earlier this week by UNISON, the Royal College of Nursing and the Royal College of Midwives, which collectively represent more than a million NHS and public service workers, including porters, refuse collectors and care staff.

UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said it would be “the ultimate tribute to remember workers who’ve lost their lives and put themselves in harm’s way to keep us safe and vital services running.

“Every year, the sacrifice of workers around the world is recognised, but this year has a special significance because of the pandemic.

“Thousands of key staff are on the frontline while the rest of us are in lockdown. That’s why we’ve issued this call for the whole country to take part and remember the sacrifices they’ve made. The best tribute we can all pay them is to stay inside to protect the NHS.”

Thousands of workers across the UK are caring for those suffering from COVID-19 or delivering vital public services that are vital for us all – potentially putting their own safety and even their own lives at risk.

In many cases, these workers know that, by simply doing their jobs, they are putting themselves at risk.

The risks faced by those working in the health and social care sectors has already been acknowledged, but there are also others – those working in childcare, police services and refuse collection, in hostels and rescue centres, in gas, water and electricity, and in transport services among them – whose work and dedication often goes unacknowledged.

Tragically, some of these workers have already died. In some cases, more could have been done to protect them, whether by better enforcement of social distancing, looking after workers with underlying health conditions or provision of adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) to keep them safe.

While improvements have been seen in some areas, more needs to be done – specifically in relation to assessing the risks our members are facing and ensuring that all staff who require it are getting the protective equipment needed to do the job safely.

UNISON has never been afraid to demand the highest standards for workers; we have not been afraid to speak out and hold the government to account on providing the right PPE when staff need it, and to hold employers to account who are not doing enough to keep their workers safe.

All of this adds to the importance of observing a minutes’ silence at 11am next Tuesday.

But other things that you can do include:

  • tweeting us, @unisontheunion, your pictures of public service workers, whether of yourself, your colleagues or even those you may not personally know, continuing to do the jobs that are keeping us all safe – although don’t go out especially to get these;
  • if you are having a problem getting the PPE you need to keep you safe, let us know here;
  • email any other COVID-19 safety related issues to healthandsafety@unison.co.uk.

Coronavirus: what you need to know


Global: Safe Workers Save Lives – PSI

Coronavirus is a deadly threat to frontline public service workers – And in particular, our members in the health sector

Safe Workers Save Lives

We rely on them to save countless lives – but for them to be able to do their job, governments across the world must take stronger action now:

  • We need sufficient Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and training so we can stay healthy while saving lives.
  • We need targeted measures to support health workers who will be working incredibly long hours: care must be provided for their children and other dependents too.
  • We need provisions for home working, paid sick leave, emergency unemployment benefits, and above all, free public healthcare for ALL.
  • We need well-staffed and resourced public health systems, equipped to respond to public health emergencies.

The ongoing Coronavirus outbreak is exposing the vital need for quality public services – especially well-staffed, resilient public health systems.

This is a matter of life and death


Nurse George Poe Williams watched colleagues die as Ebola decimated the Liberian health workforce. Now, he has a message for governments around the world facing the #CoronaVirus: #SafeWorkersSaveLive. Join PSI’s Campaign now at peopleoverprofi.it

Safe Workers Save Lives

What can I do?

  • Fill in our survey and upload materials, resources and strategies for workers and unions dealing with the virus outbreak.
  • Share stories, photos, videos and testimonies from the front lines of the fight against the virus
  • Download our Poster to display at your workplace or share with your members.
  • Sign our petition below for Personal Protective Equipment and training for all workers who need it.
  • Browse our library of materials on COVID-19 for workers and unions.

What can unions do?

  • Fight for the active involvement of trade unions in government decision-making to safeguard workplace safety and health and ensure the costs of this crisis are not borne by the working class.
  • Contribute to policies which ensure all workers, including informal sector workers, casual or sub-contracted workers, are provided sufficient sick-pay and leave allowances for any necessary quarantine or when their workplaces are temporarily closed down to curtail transmission of the infection.
  • Push for the ILO guidelines on decent work in public emergency services to be adopted at the national level, to safeguard workers on the front line, as well as ILO Conventions 155, 187 and ILO Recommendations 194, 197, 171 and Protocol to Convention 155.
  • Stand up for the rights of migrants and refugees as part of the national COVID-19 response and combat all forms of xenophobia and racism.


Palestine: PGFTU calls for improved health and safety at workplaces

The BWI-affiliated Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU) made an urgent appeal to Israeli employers to ensure the decent working conditions of Palestinian workers employed in their labour market and settlements. The union called on employers to secure the health and safety of all workers, including migrant workers from Palestine. It also said that COVID-19 regulations should be fully implemented at the workplaces, including physical distancing and full personal protective equipment (PPEs) for all workers.

“Palestinians workers working for Israeli companies should be protected by the same laws on health and safety as Israeli workers, and should not risk working in unhealthy working environment without PPEs,” PGFTU Secretary General Shaher Saad said.

The PGFTU said that despite an increase in the daily wage of construction workers, from ILS 1,200 to 1,400 (US$ 334-389), during the crisis, there is still a high risk posed to workers, as  the increase tempts them to take job offers without considering their health and safety. The union also warned of a similar danger, where workers are employed in medical waste facilities without providing them with internationally-recognized occupational safety and health equipment.

Palestinian workers believe that the salaries provided by Israeli employers are more than double the wages they receive from their country.  However, Palestinians working for Israelis are not protected by labour laws covering Israeli workers, such as health benefits, sick leave, vacation time and other workers’ rights, including non-discrimination based on gender and religion.

BWI news report.