Ukraine: 16 days of activism against gender-based violence

17 December 2019 08:31

This year the Construction and Building Materials Workers Union of Ukraine (PRODBUD) campaigned for 16 days against gender-based violence and focused trade union activities on raising workers’ awareness on the violence and harassment in the workplace and educated them about the ILO Convention 190. The campaign started on 25 November which marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and run until 10 December, International Human Rights Day.

All workers, particularly women workers in the construction and building materials sectors in Ukraine suffer from violence and harassment at the workplaces. Women workers also suffer from gender-based stereotypes when they advocate for their rights.  Quiet often, women are   blamed for provoking sexual harassment or violence but in reality, they are victims. As a result, many keep silent about the daily abuses they face at work.  Because of this, the union, felt it was critical to launch a campaign to bring more public awareness to empower workers, specifically women workers.   

“The goal of our campaign was to reach out as many workers as possible to talk with them about the problem of violence and harassment in the worksite and educate them about ways to combat it,” stated Lesia Husak, chair of the Nikolaevcement company union organization. 

She continued, “We focused on the workplaces and professional schools in our outreach. We were positively surprised to see how young people in professional schools actively joined the campaign and showed zero tolerance to the violence and harassment. They are ready to campaign for their future.”  

In the sixteen days, PROFBUD reached out to 1,500 workers in nine regions of the country. PROFBUD developed campaign materials including posters and produced a video that showcased the activities