On December 8, at the ETF premises in Brussels was held a meeting of national representatives in the collecting signatures campaign within ECI Fair transport Europe for social justice in transport. The meeting was attended by Eduardo Chagas, ETF General Secretary. The countries’ representatives reported activities and challenges. Best practices were identified in all seven steps of the campaign. The most important seems to be the clear message: for better transport services through quality employment – in all modes of transport and for all EU citizens in all members-states.
FTTUB has already made the first step of the campaign – to present it to its activists (presentation at the seminar in Sandanski), to the Federation Council, which is the campaign team; and also to all members attending the solemn ceremony on the occasion of the Volunteer’s Day. Information about the initiative has been made available through articles published on the website of FTTUB, as well as in the social networks. Each trade union can initiate its own information event.
FTTUB also started the second phase of the campaign – its introduction to other federations, employers’ organizations and institutions. This has begun with the call for support at the meeting in Sofia where the national social partners CITUB and CEIBG presented their joint campaign “Business to the light”. To recall that in Bulgaria, there is a close relationship between the gray economy which is a source of unfair competition and, as a result, the worse working conditions and less social justice in every industry, including transport, especially in tourism. The initiative received the support of the Minister of Tourism Nikolina Angelkova who participated to the meeting.
The third phase – ensuring broad public support, started with the FTTUB decision taken the same day (December 8) to call on all members to collect 20 signatures everyone within a month. The target group is the nearest environment – family, relatives, neighbors and friends, people who care about us, our work and our future. The holidays provide a good opportunity for communication and call for support. Online voting needs to go to page and, at “language”, select Bulgarian; it is quite easy and can be performed by several people from the same computer or smartphone. Voting on paper requires printing a special form where you enter personal data at each subscription. This form can be obtained from FTTUB.
During the meeting in Brussels, it became clear that the best result so far is in Denmark, Sweden, Belgium and the UK. Overall, however, the situation is alarming – for three months by a total of 12 signatures in all countries are little more than 17,300 of target is 1.25 million. The final number is above the official goal, since up to 20% of the signatures are not valid for different reasons and with 1 million signatures the campaign success is not guaranteed.
As its positive outcome can save years of difficult negotiations, it is important to mobilize now. This is our referendum – for a better European transport tomorrow, we must not miss this chance today!