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17 April 2008
This meeting of unions from the Asia/Pacific region consisting of delegates from India, Vietnam, Japan, New Zealand, Indonesia, Solomon Islands, Canada and Australia, having met in Christchurch from 14-16 April 2008, resolves as follows:
1. We ask that the UITBB leadership work to establish a 7th meeting of this seminar process and that the meeting should take place at an appropriate time in 2009. We suggest that discussions take place with unions in a range of countries including Indonesia, Canada and Pakistan in order to establish a host country for our next meeting.2. Our meeting in Christchurch has had a special focus on the issue of labour migration and OHS and it is critical that we continue our work around these key issues. We believe that the issues of OHS and labour migration should be two of the key themes that are pursued in our 7th seminar.3. We resolve to take the following practical steps to assist migrant workers who are being abused and exploited:
a) We will seek to organise a day of protest in key cities throughout the Asia/Pacific region (or on a worldwide basis) to draw attention to the problems faced by migrant workers particularly guest workers, in the construction industry. These protests should be co-ordinated to take place at the same time before the end of 2008. The UITBB office should frame a list of demands that can be submitted to governments on the day of our protest;b) We urge unions participating in these seminars to be in contact with other seminar participants to develop Memorandum’s of Understanding about assisting each other around migrant workers moving between each other’s countryc) We resolve to commit ourselves to press our governments to adopt ILO Conventions 97 and 143, to ratify and implement the provisions of the ILO Multilateral Framework on Labour migration and the UN Convention on the Protection of Migrant workers and their families.
4. In order to strengthen the content of the 7th seminar we resolve to: a) invite a victim/s of migrant labour abuse to attend our seminar to give us first hand information on their perspective.b) invite NGO’s and community groups working with mistreated migrants to explain their activities (especially in relation to countries in the Middle East)c) broaden our invite list to construction unions across the Asia Pacific including the Middle East
d) urge participants at the next meeting to bring the latest up to date information on conditions and standards in their country (this can be used to provide information on rights to migrant workers)
e) to furnish technical information on OHS standards so as to provide knowledge and information on these matters to aid our comrades particularly in the developing countries
5. This meeting repeats the call of earlier Asia Pacific seminars that Asbestos should be subject to a world wide ban and urges governments, employers and unions to adopt and enforce this ban.6. We call upon the UITBB to place all of the papers presented at this Christchurch meeting on the UITBB website as a matter of urgency.7. We ask that a copy of this final resolution of the 6th Seminar be forwarded to ACTRAV at the ILO
8. We ask that the UITBB office provide each of the participating unions with a copy of the e-mail addresses of those who have attended the Asia Pacific Seminars.
9. Lastly seminar participants place on record our gratitude to the New Zealand Building Trades Union for the hospitality and warmth they have shown to the delegates during our fruitful stay in New Zealand.