“Summertime … and the livin’ is easy”

Yes, we’re opening this week’s blog post with lyrics from George Gershwin’s masterpiece, Summertime.

Many global unions (and others) tend to shut down in August, particularly in the northern hemisphere, and as a result we’ve not gotten any campaign proposals recently. This will almost certainly change in the next week or so as people return to their offices. In the meanwhile …

This week we shut down the Ukraine campaign following President Zelensky’s decision not to veto the anti-union law. We announced this in a mass mailing early in the week, together with the good news from Castorama in Poland, where workers have won a major court battle (we had a campaign on this a couple of years back).

The Belarus campaign finally broke the 10,000 barrier – and today has 10,175 supporters.

Our mailing lists grew by just 66 last week – this is due to not having a new campaign, which would lead to a boost in new subscribers.  This should change soon.

To-do list: From 107 at the beginning of August the list is now down to 60 as we clear up many older tasks, mostly dealing with back-end of the website. We hope to shortly bring this number down to 50.

Written by admin in: Campaigns,Mailing list |

Ukraine campaign ends as President refused to veto anti-union law

Ukraine campaign: Some good news and bad news. The good news is that the campaign was a relatively large one for us — in the end, we got 7,090 supporters. The bad news is that President Zelensky ignored our appeal and signed the anti-union bill into law. The campaign will be suspended today.

Poland: Just some good news this time. We’ve heard from UNI Europe that “4 of 10 dismissed union leaders [have been] reinstated at Castorama/Poland”. The LabourStart campaign closed some time ago, but we made a real contribution to that victory.

Global Solidarity Conference 2023: We held the first (online) meeting of the global steering committee and have agreed on next steps. The conference will be held in Tbilisi, Georgia next spring and we plan to announce the actual date very soon.

Mailing lists: Following the growth of our Ukraine campaign, we’ve picked up 437 new subscribers to our lists — including 137 new ones for the Ukrainian list. Last week, we added 440 new names to our lists.

Our home page: The technical issues now appear to have been fixed following the corruption of our database last month.

To-do list: We’ve made more progress in reducing the backlog of tasks this month. We started with 107 at the beginning of this month and are today down to just 66. We hope to be around 56 by the end of this month – a much more manageable number.


Written by admin in: 2023 conference,Campaigns,Mailing list |

Ukraine campaign – nearly 6,000 supporters

In Ukraine, workers demonstrate against the new anti-union law.

Ukraine campaign: Following our launch in English last Tuesday, the campaign quickly grew to 5,785 supporters and currently appears in 15 languages with more to come. helped by encouraging people who support their petition to also support ours (this is a first, and good news). At our suggestion, they cleared their campaign and text with the unions. The unions in Ukraine are helping to build support, and the campaign also benefitted from a re-tweet by the popular British writer and journalist Paul Mason. We received a small number of hostile messages accusing us, on the one side, of being pro-Putin for daring the criticise the Ukrainian government during war-time, and on the other — for being pro-Zelensky and … well, you can imagine the rest.

Kazakhstan campaign: We are running this for a bit longer as the case remains in the courts. We will do a followup mailing today to our list about this.

Iran campaign: We closed the campaign, announcing that one of the two labour rights defenders has been released. This too will be covered in today’s mailing.

Global Solidarity Conference 2023: We’ve scheduled a first meeting of the joint local and international steering committee for later this week. We hope to be able to announce dates shortly.

Mailing lists: Our lists have grown as we add more campaign supporters; last week, we picked up 440 new subscribers, most of them in English but also 37 new subscribers to our Ukrainian list.

Home page: I fixed a long-standing software issue with links to the second country (if there is one) for a news story.

Other software issues: Our programmer has returned and resumed work on fixing our database; she will also be available to help with other projects.

T-shirts:I had a long conversation with No Sweat in the UK and we’re exploring the possibility of doing a second t-shirt very soon. Last year’s campaign was quite successful.

Facebook: Our Group (Global Labour News & Information) has come under attack by spammers – though there is no reason to believe that we’ve been singled out. We’ve been deleting the offensive posts and blocking the spammers, have resumed vetting people who try to join the group, and have posted a pinned message to the group explaining what’s going on.

To-do list: As promised, the list of often longstanding items has been dropping steadily throughout August, from 107 to 75 today. I hope to have this list below 60 by the end of the month.


New campaign launched – Ukraine

We’re back to weekly updates.

Campaigns: We launched a new campaign on Friday in support of Ukrainian trade unions.  We’ll be keeping our Kazakhstan campaign live for a bit longer as we wait for news from the union.

T-shirts: We’ve scheduled a call with an organisation in the UK that does union-made t-shirts as a possible new way to produce our shirts this year.

Global Solidarity Conference 2023: This week we’ll be writing to the members of the steering group to schedule a first meeting (on Zoom).

Our to-do list:  We’ve had a very long to-do list for some time now, and it was 104 a week ago.  It is now down to just 83 and I hope to continue to reduce it throughout August, aiming to reach 60 by the end of the month.

Software issues: The programmer who assisted us recently is back from holiday this week so we should be able to move forward with more fixes and improvements to the website.

Written by admin in: 2023 conference,Campaigns,News database |

LabourStart in Numbers: 1 August 2022

The first number next to each item is the current total as of today; the second number is the total as of the first day of last month.  Where one number is provided it means that there has been no change since last month.

Lists or accounts that have shrunk are in italics.  Lists or accounts which experienced growth are in bold.


Mailing Lists:

The top 10:

English: 73493

French: 7457

German: 5796-5766

Spanish: 5428

Turkish: 4161

Korean: 3308

Italian: 3074

Russian: 2668

Norwegian: 2121

Romanian:  1771

Dutch: 1476

The others:

Arabic:  821

Belarusian:  288

Bulgarian: 17

Chinese: 899

Creole:  11

Czech: 63

Danish: 92

Esperanto: 178

Farsi:  207

Finnish:  465

Georgian:  135

Greek: 54

Hebrew:  289

Hindi:  80

Hungarian:  178

Indonesian:  460

Japanese: 386

Lithuanian:  63

Malaysian: 21

Polish: 837

Portuguese: 1287

Punjabi:  2

Sinhalese: 1

Slovakian: 15

Swedish: 947

Tagalog: 159

Thai:  152

Ukrainian: 313

Vietnamese:  21


Executive and Interns:  12

LabourStart Correspondents:  662-659

LabourStart Translators:  87

Africa Caucus:  63



Members:  837-838

Photos:  10303-10297


Facebook Pages/Groups:

No concerted effort was made in the past month to increase our numbers. page likes:  13553-13547 page follows: 14499-14490

Global Labour News and Information: 9011-9013

LabourStart UK likes:  page unavailable-2032

LabourStart UK follows:  page unavailable-2096

LabourStart Francophone: 590 (last post February 2021)

LabourStart Brasil:  502

LabourStart Turkce:  2101-2104

LabourStart TV likes: 443-446

LabourStart TV follows:  455-460

LabourStart Israel: CLOSED (last post 2018)



No concerted effort was made in the past month to increase our numbers.

Group: 2559-2545

Page: 188-123



Sporadic efforts were made to grow the Global English-language, Canadian English-language, Australian, Global Portuguese-language and Global Spanish- feeds.  No concerted effort was made in the past month to increase our numbers for other accounts.

Global English: 36978-36427

Canada English: 21291-20951

Portuguese: 9606-9193

Global Spanish: 9097-8940

Australia: 9031-8754

USA: 5453-5481

Canada French: 3109-3098

Russian: 46

Hebrew:  48 (last tweet 02-2021)

Italian: 508-507 (last tweet 11-2021)

Swedish: 335-337 (last tweet 2016)

Indoesia: 350 (last tweet 2015)

French: 226 (last tweet 2018)

German: 120 (last tweet 2018)

Japanese: 21 (last tweet 2012)

Dutch: 12 (last tweet April 2012)

Arabic: 7 (last tweet May 2012)

South Asia (English): 21 NEW and not yet active.




Weekly update: Global conference, Iran, News database, Correspondents, Campaigns

Conference 2023: We have begun work planning our next Global Solidarity Conference — which is long overdue — in Tbilisi.  The Georgian Trade Union Confederation has named its members of the steering committee and we have invited members of the LabourStart Executive to participate as well.  We hope to have the first meeting of the joint committee very soon.

Iran: We have raised workers’ rights cases in Iran with three global union federations — IndustriALL, the ITF and Education International.  EI has requested to be included as a sponsor of our current campaign; we have asked about whether they want a separate campaign for a teacher activist.

News database: The work repairing this continues as we consider moving the whole database to a different web hosting company.  (Support from our current hosts has been non-existent — and they caused the problem in the first place.)

New correspondents: We added three new correspondents last week from Canada (Iran), Germany and Hong Kong (UK).

Campaigns: We had been invited to prepare a campaign in support of a workers’ rights activist in Kenya, but the company caved and agreed to the demands before a campaign could be launched.

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