Zuzanna Muskat-Gorska, Global Trade Union HIV/AIDS Coordinator at the International Trade Union Confederation, focuses on social protection’s role in HIV responses in her statement to the “Follow up to the 2011 UN General Assembly High Level Meeting on AIDS”.
The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) that affiliates national trade union organizations in 151 countires worldwide appreciates the observations of the Report and the momentum created by the 2011 UN High Level Meeting on AIDS.
Accordingly, in terms of further actions we agree that the AIDS response should play a role of pathfinder in the area of integrated development goals and therefore in October we welcomed the the new report entitled “Social Protection Floor for a Fair and Inclusinve Globalization” – presented by the Executive Director of the UN Women, Michelle Bachelet and the Director General of the International Labour Organzation (ILO) Juan Somavia to the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
This report underlines the urgency of building a global social protection floor and highlights that today:
- 75% of the worlds population are not covered by an adequate social security; and that
- masses of people are being pushed below the poverty line due to needing to pay for healthcare.
We therefore underline that the AIDS movement, including trade unions, needs to continue to strongly emphasise the “Getting to Zero” message in the political leadership and global governance mechanisms, while mobilizing partners to achieve the HLM goals.
In the view of that the ITUC welcomed the outcomes of the Cannes G20 Summit in October where Heads of State agreed on the recognition of the importance of economic empowerment of the youth, who still account more than 40% of the new HIV infections, made progress toward a financial transaction tax as well as on the recognition of the importance of investment in social protection floors, such as assistance to healthcare.
But the struggle continues. Trade unions agree that shared responsibility requires that we work in a new leadership landscape, in close, innovative partnerships, with all stakeholders, across regions and movements (including development cooperation, social justice, global economy, intellectual property rights). The ITUC considers that at the same time we need to ensure that HIV and human rights retain priority in the broader health and development context, and we need to push the international community to explore ways to close the global AIDS, health and development resource and commitment gap.