Published: 04/05/2023

The IUF has welcomed the news that the Arthur Svensson International Prize for Trade Union Rights 2023 has been awarded to the International Domestic Workers Federation (IDWF) and its General Secretary Elizabeth Tang. The Arthur Svensson International Prize  is presented annually to a person or organization that has worked predominately to promote trade union rights and/or strengthen trade union organizing around the world.

  • The award panel recognized that the IDWF as “a unique organization that was founded by representatives from this group themselves in the belief that their work should be valued as highly as other work, and that they should have the same rights”
  • The panel further noted that “the IDWF’s efforts were central to the efforts to get ILO Convention 189 on decent work for employees in private homes in place” along with the follow-up work to get the Convention ratified; it also commended the IDWF’s involvement in the negotiations to achieve ILO Convention 190 on eliminating violence and harassment in the world of work
  • The award recognizes the contribution of Elizabeth Tang for her leadership of the network that was the forerunner of IDWF as well as her election as the first General Secretary when the global organization was formally established in 2013;
  • General Secretary Tang was arrested by the Hong Kong National Security police in March 2023 and is now on bail awaiting developments in her case; the IUF together with the Council of Global Unions and unions around the world, are demanding the dropping of all charges

To learn more, please click HERE for RadioLabour’s recent broadcast!

Through this award, the prize committee will shine a spotlight on the important work IDWF and Tang do for this extremely vulnerable group of workers all over the world. They provide the women in particular with a network, strength and information about their rights, and provide training in conducting trade union work through the member organisations. The award is also a strong call to the ILO's member countries to ratify ILO Conventions 189 and 190, two conventions which are crucial for a dignified working situation for workers in private homes.
Arthur Svensson International Prize Committee