Published: 12/12/2019

The IUF’s commitment to equality in the workplace and in society took an important step forward with the IUF LGBTI Workers & Allies’ Committee Constituting Meeting that was hosted by the IUF-affiliated Servicios CC.OO. in Barcelona on November 13-14, 2019.  The Committee elected two women: Michele Kessler from UFCW (USA) as Chair and Gisele Adão from CONTAC (Brazil) as Vice-Chair. The IUF LGBTI Workers & Allies’ Committee constitutes a formal group within the IUF and will be represented by its Chair with full voting and speaking powers on IUF governing bodies.

Union representatives from IUF-affiliates in Brazil, South Africa, Spain, US/CanadaAustria, Belgium and Italy shared their experiences and best practices in advancing LGBTI workers’ rights across IUF regions and sectors. An important part of the discussions focused on work to strengthen their unions, including building to make them more inclusive. The IUF Secretariat reported on IUF-TNC agreements on sexual harassment and on a new IUF brochure outlining possible collective bargaining demands to support LGBTI workers’ rights. Sodexo’s Global Chief Diversity & Inclusion, Margot Slattery, was a guest speaker who presented Sodexo’s global pride strategy including what the company does to advance LGBTI workers’ rights in Sodexo workplaces.

A fully engaged group of IUF affiliates contributed to the constitution of the IUF LGBTI Workers & Allies’ Committee and spent the two days learning, strategizing, and planning next steps and activities. They elected the LGBTI Workers and Allies’ Committee leadership. Congratulations to Chair Michele Kessler & Vice-Chair Gisele Adão!