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Organizing partner
Paola Simonetti
Deputy Director, Economic and Social Department

Antonia Wulff
Education International
Coordinator: Education & Employment

Workers and Trade Unions

Workers and trade unions represent the voices and interests of hundreds of millions of workers from across the globe. Our Major Group brings together several different types of worker organizations from national trade union centres, to regional trade union organizations, global union federations and trade union solidarity support organizations. We defend the interests of workers, regardless of whether they belong to the union movement, are employed in the formal sector, or work in the informal economy.

Our mission is to ensure that all people have access to a decent life and decent work in a healthy environment, access to quality public services and to quality education and skills training as means to achieving the Decent Work Agenda. We are determined to organize to defend human rights and labour standards everywhere, and to promote the growth of trade unions for the benefit of all working people and their families. We are resolute to overcome poverty and inequality through social justice.

The Workers and Trade Unions Major Group promotes trade union ideals and principles. It is therefore deeply committed to promoting gender balance in its delegations, as well as to encouraging the involvement of young trade union leaders.

Trade unions and the 2030 Agenda

Trade unions are heavily involved in the 2030 Agenda process at global, regional and national level. They uphold freedom of association, protect social dialogue and collective bargaining, and promote decent work, social protection and the rights of working people. Through this work, trade unions are instrumental to achieving the SDGs. It is in this frame that trade unions from around the world are conducting national monitoring and analysis of how their governments are doing with regards to their commitments to achieving the implementation of the SDGs. The key findings of this work are presented in national country profile reports, which are available on

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To ensure openness and transparency, Organizing Partners of each Major Group were asked to report on their activities and governance since the lead up to the Rio+20 Conference, including a written description of their selection/election criteria and a list of the organizations the Major Group consults with.
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