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International Transport Workers Federation

US Workers Demand Investment in Urban Public Transport

Statement from the International Transportworker Federation (ITF) - May 21, 2014

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are not the official position of the IWW (or even the IWW’s EUC) and do not necessarily represent the views of anyone but the author’s.

Around 1,000 public transport workers from 40 states gathered in Washington DC, USA on 20 May to demand more investment in metros and buses in the country’s cities and towns.

At the rally, leaders of two ITF affiliates – the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU)and the Transport Workers’ Union (TWU) – joined their members, legislators in the US Senate and Congress and other ‘Fund Transit’ campaign supporters to demand that the federal puts more money into better, safer transport for workers and passengers.

It was the centerpiece of a series of national activities for the ATU’s May Transit Action Month.

Afterwards campaigners descended on Capitol Hill offices to visit Members of Congress to urge increased funding for public transport in the nation’s transportation funding law, which is set to expire 1 October. The trust fund enabled by the legislation will run out of money to pay for highway and transit projects in August.

Addressing the workers at the rally, Mac Urata, ITF inland transport section secretary, said: “You are not alone in your fight.

Public transit systems and their workers are under attack all over the world because of privatisation and deregulation.

Workers’ rights and working conditions are being undermined and the travelling public see multinationals making profits while integrated transport systems are broken up.

The ITF and its affiliates stand together with you in your campaign.

International Transport Workers Federation : Trade Unions Must Act Now on Climate Change

By the International Transport Workers Federation - November 11, 2013

Disclaimer: The views expressed here are not the official position of the IWW (or even the IWW’s EUC) and do not necessarily represent the views of anyone but the author’s. The IWW is not affiliated with the ITF and vice versa.

Twenty activists from 14 countries came together in Johannesburg last week to determine the next steps in the fight against climate change. Participants at the meeting, which ran from 31 October to 1 November, agreed that the labour movement must move quickly to lead the way in the transition to a lower-carbon economy.

The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) this year confirmed that global warming is man-made and has worsened considerably since 2007. Energy consumption plays a big part in this decline - and the transport sector is one of the biggest consumers of energy globally.

However, activists agreed that environmentally friendly policies should be good news for the transport sector. For instance, public transport is preferable to private in limiting carbon emissions, which could dramatically boost job creation in the public transport sector.

Activists also agreed that we must take a whole economy approach to tackle climate change. The current global economic model focuses on economic growth regardless of environmental, societal or labour impacts. Climate change is a systemic issue, and unions must work with broader social and environmental movements to be effective.

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