Albania hosts UNESCO’s regional training on journalists’ labour rights
Journalists’ labour rights’ infringements in South East Europe and Turkey were discussed and challenged during a regional training-of-trainers (ToT) seminar organized 19 December 2016 in Tirana, Albania by the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the Association of Professional Journalists in Albania (APJA). The seminar is part of the UNESCO-EU funded project, Building Trust in media in South East Europe and Turkey.
Tim Dawson, President of the National Union of Journalists in the United Kingdom and Ireland delivered a training, based on his long serving experience as trade unionist, to trainers from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Turkey and Kosovo*. It included various techniques aimed to ensure the recognition of trade unions and their efficiency in bargaining collective agreements and wages. The training was attended by 13 participants from the region.
Despite the existence of some legal guarantees, reports too often highlight that journalists’ labour rights in South East Europe and Turkey are more breached than upheld. The lack of independent journalists’ trade unions that could defend proper contracts and strengthen social protection measures of journalists appears a central part of the problem.
The training class hence covered important areas for improving journalists’ labour rights, among others: (i) trade union recognition agreements; (ii) components of wage claims; (iii) collective bargaining techniques; (iv) annual negotiation on wages; (v) education of media owners on labour rights; (vi) ways to strengthen workers networks within the group of media enterprises; (vii) cooperation with international trade union networks; (viii) ways to encourage journalists to organize themselves and act collectively; (ix) settlement procedures, etc.
Based on the ideas and best practices presented during the workshop by Tim Dawson, participants were requested to repeat this workshop locally for the benefit of their members. The EFJ will organize a follow-up ToT seminar next year.
The UNESCO-EFJ project “Building Trust in media in South East Europe and Turkey” is funded by the European Union. The project supports media freedom and media integrity in the EU enlargement countries by improving the internal governance of media organizations through the implementation of internal rules and good practices that recognize human rights and labour standards.
* Administered by the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo in the context of UN Security Council Resolution 1244
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