ITUC Releases Survey of Trade Union Violations in Indonesia

The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) has released its global & country-by-country survey of trade union rights violations, and you can read its report on Indonesia here.  The report is a useful round-up of the various issues facing unions and includes particular cases illustrating each of these systemic problems.

Included in the report is an interview with Rekson Silaban, President of Konfederasi Serikat Buruh Sejahtera Indonesia (KSBSI), from early 2008.  In the interview, he discusses the future of trade union strategy in Indonesia, including KSBSI’s attempts to facilitate and incentivize organizing campaigns by local affiliates.  He also describes some KSBSI initiated projects to address the informal sector and makes clear that the union movement will have to develop new strategies to address the informal sector:

In Indonesia these workers are “moving targets”, so it’s difficult and costly to recruit them. A new strategy has to be developed so that we can adapt to this growing flexibility, which manifests itself in the form of relocations, outsourcing, recourse to subcontracting firms, etc. But the trade union approach is still the same as it was when workers were employed on a permanent basis. Flexibility is a reality. We cannot keep on simply pinpointing it as the enemy, and leave it at that. We have to reflect on what we can do for these workers…

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