On 10-11 of November 2019, the first Pan-European Organizing Academy took place in Chisinau, Moldova, where young organizers from Croatia, Macedonia, Ukraine, Russia, Moldova and Ireland came together to share best practices in organizing and they agreed to develop an organizing toolkit for trade unions in the region.
In the past two decades trade unions in Eastern Europe have gone through a serious transformation to find their place in the new labour market system. As a result of the transformation, many unions in the region experienced dramatic membership loss. This was due to the privatization of public companies where unions had strong membership and they were unable to regain its members as the companies refused to recognize the trade union.
To fight these challenges, trade unions launched aggressive organizing campaigns which were showcased by young organizers at the Organizing Academy. These case studies described organizing strategies and tactics in reaching out to workers at national and multinational companies as well as targeting young workers, professional groups and workers of entire sectors.
“It was important that we highlight successful organizing cases for trade unions to learn and emulate. Based on this, we can develop an organizing toolkit, which can serve as a practical guide for trade unions to increase their organizing capacities and stop membership decline,” said Coen van der Veer, BWI Regional Representative in Europe.