Topic outline

  • Video
    • 11 - 15 July 2016

      Trade Union Strategies on
      the use of ILS in labour law reforms

      Dear participants,

      Welcome to the on-line platform of the course " Trade Union Strategies on the use of ILS in labour law reforms" (Turin - Italy).

      You may use the tabs on the right to navigate around the platform. You can find the flyer, the programme, the list of resource persons and participants as well as all the presentations and documentation relating to the course subjects. You will also find a discussion forum, which you are all invited to join. 

      Trade unions have a key role to play in the elaboration of labour laws. If in some countries this role is fully fulfilled, in many others much can still be done to strengthen trade unions’ capacity to participate in a proactive and meaningful way in labour law reform processes.

      International Labour Standards (ILS) and the related ILO supervisory mechanisms, as well as a range of other types of services provided by the ILO can bring significant support to the work of trade unions in the elaboration or review of labour laws at the national level.

      ACTRAV, in collaboration with the Labour Law and Reform Unit (LABOURLAW) and the Standards Department (NORMES), has developed this course with the intention to explore the various ways in which these tools provided by the ILO can help trade unions developing their strategies to better defend their position in the context of elaboration or review of labour law.

      General objective
      The general objective of the workshop is to strengthen the knowledge and skills of participants concerning the added value of building on ILS, on the ILO supervisory mechanisms, as well as on comparative practices, in the process of elaboration or revision of labour legislation.

      Specific objectives
      At the end of the workshop, participants will be able to:
      • understand the major international trends in labour law reform;
      • formulate comments on draft labour law provisions in specific subject areas in accordance with ILS;
      • use the relevant electronic ILO databases;
      • develop a trade union strategy in the context of the elaboration or review of labour law, including, when relevant, the use of ILO technical assistance and its supervisory mechanisms;
      • prepare a strategic approach for defending the workers’ interest in tripartite negotiations of draft labour laws.

      The course will comprise of the following sessions:

      ILO role in labour legislation (technical assistance, research, capacity building and standard-setting)

      • Comparative trends in labour legislation
      • Participatory labour law making: the role of social dialogue
      • The added value of ILS in labour law making
      o Using ILS and ILO supervisory Mechanisms
      o ILS on freedom of association, the right to strike and collective bargaining, non-discrimination in employment and occupation, termination of employment and the employment relationship
      • ILO databases
      • Trade Union Strategies in labour law making
      • Negotiating labour law reforms

      A fully participatory approach will be adopted, drawing as much as possible, on the practical experience of participants. Priority will be giving to activities generating dialogue and experience sharing. To this end, presentations from experts and practitioners will be combined with different kind of group exercises and role plays.

      The course is intended to trade unionists or lawyers in charge of labour law issues in workers’ organizations. Priority will be given to participants from countries with on-going labour law reforms, or from countries that have recently in-depth revised their labour laws.

      Participants should be able to actively participate in the delivery of the course.
      They should be able to apply in their daily work and to transfer the knowledge and skills acquired during the course. It is therefore important to select participants with high level of technical expertise, especially legal expertise and training experience.
      In addition, it is also important that participants have experience in negotiating LL reforms at the national level.

      The nominating organisation is also strongly urged to place a special emphasis on the nomination of women candidates.

      Organizations and their leaders are expected to provide full support to their participants in carrying out pre-course preparations as well as post-course exercises, particularly in relation to the implementation of the individual work-plans that participants will have created during the training course.

      Jesús García Jiménez - Activity Manager

      Jesus Garcia arrives in Turin after having lead the ILO Regional Office in Lima, a regional training Project on Social Security for unions in Latin America. His previous union experience was both at the tables of social dialogue in Spain, and as coordinator of national union networks, which gave him a deep understanding  of tripartite participation processes, social security and health and safety at work (both in Spain in the EU), as well as the inner mechanisms of trade unions.


      PhD in Economics from the Complutense University of Madrid, economist and actuary in the same university, he initially developed his professional career in the financial-actuarial sector, and once presented his doctoral thesis on the privatization of Social Security in Latin America, in 1999, he started providing technical support to trade unions. His participation as a teacher in various courses and seminars, as well as in various publications, completes his experience.


      Jesus is now the officer in charge of workers’ activities at the Latin America Desk, in coordination with ACTRAV Geneva and ACTRAV specialists in the region. This teamwork offers training tools to trade union movements in Latin America, in order to facilitate their technical-associative performance in the national social dialogue and in the sub regional integration processes, as well as within the framework of trade union participation in the ILO itself.


      Each participant is required to prepare beforehand and to bring to the course a "country report" no longer than 3 - 5 pages (or 7-10 slides PowerPoint) addressing the following issues:

      - Structure and organisation of their trade union organization (including information on changes in membership, gender representation, with a focus on recent developments concerning FoA and collective bargaining);
      - Major national labour law instruments (labour code, laws on trade unions and collective relations, laws on dispute resolution…) [Just a list, no need to go into details]
      - Description of the main issues at stake in the ongoing labour law reform (or recently adopted labour law , if applicable). This will be the basis of the participants presentation on the first day in the group exercise so it will be important to provide some detailed information about it.
      - Major gaps between national labour law (existing laws and proposed reforms) and ratified ILS and specific examples/cases of violations of internationally recognized workers’ rights with a main focus on FoA and CB.
      - Description of the social dialogue process around ongoing or completed labour law reforms (in terms of consultation with the trade unions, existing structures (Ie tripartite bodies).
      - Description of the way in which their union is relying upon - and using - ILS and ILO supervisory system in their actions and strategies (including possible obstacles);
      - Description of trade union training programmes in the field of labour legislations and labour standards.