9th Congress of the Trade Union of Education and Science Workers of Ukraine
On 17 December 2020, the 9th Congress of the Trade Union of Education and Science Workers of Ukraine took place. For the first time in the Trade Union’s history the Congress was carried out online due to the COVID-19 pandemic, however this did not prevent lively and fruitful debates. More than 160 participants joined the online event.
In his report to the Congress, TUESWU President Georgiy Trukhanov evaluated activities for the last five years and outlined future priorities.
He stressed that Trade Union’s activities had been carried out in conditions of changes in the social and political life, financial crisis, economic instability and COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to the joint trade union actions and international solidarity support, we succeeded to prevent the adoption of a number of draft laws aimed to restrict existing rights of education workers and the trade unions. More than 20 mass protest actions had been organized during the reporting period.
The TUESWU President informed that during the Congress period the wages of education workers had been increased 9 times. Depending on the category of employees, their wages increased by 100-180%. The rate of the allowance for the prestige of the pedagogical job had increased to 30% of the basic salary.
He also emphasized that more than 3,400 schools were not closed and about 20,000 teachers were not dismissed thanks to the trade unions’ actions during the last three years.
«We understand the situation in the country, but we believe that the Government shouldn’t save on education: on children, on educators and on teachers. Financing of education is the investment in the future of the state, in development and innovations, which cannot be secured at the expense of educators».
TUESWU President expressed his gratitude to the Education International and the ETUCE for their solidarity support in TUESWU’s continuous struggle for the workers’ and trade unions’ rights.
During the discussion of the President’s report Congress delegates raised a lot of pressing issues, including underfinancing of the sector, prevention of adoption of antisocial legislation, renewal of trade unions, etc.
After a lively discussion the Congress approved the five-year report and defined the main directions of activity of the Trade Union of Education and Science of Ukraine for the next Congress period 2021-2025. The delegates also adopted statements to the government concerning the rights of educators, in particular, related to the wage increase and the compulsory state coronavirus insurance of educators.
The Congress re-elected Georgiy Trukhanov President of the Trade Union of Education and Science Workers of Ukraine. Liubov Garbarenko and Serhiy Romaniuk were re-elected Vice-Presidents of the Trade Union.
The Congress also elected three vice-presidents on the voluntary basis: Serhiy Puhachev (head of Vinnitsa Regional Committee of the Trade Union), Volodymyr Tsvykh (head of the trade union organisation at the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv) and Olha Chabaniuk, who would be responsible for the work with youth.