Public Services International (PSI)
Public Services International (PSI) is a global trade union federation dedicated to promoting quality public services in every part of the world. The union brings together more than 20 million workers, represented by over 700 unions in 163 countries and territories. PSI members, two-thirds of whom are women, work in social services, health care, municipal and community services, central government, and public utilities such as water and electricity.
What is Public Service International organisation doing to reduce the gender pay gap?
Equal pay for work of equal value is such a key issue to PSI that it was reinforced as an organizational priority in our latest Programme of Action (2018-2022). “[As] The gender pay gap and women’s over-representation in involuntary part-time, fixed-term and other forms of precarious employment detrimentally affect working women’s daily lives […] we must seek to revalue occupations carried out predominantly by women [… and] support collective legal and political actions, at national and global level, that allow victims of discrimination to take the matter to the courts”. For that, PSI will “advocate, and provide tools for affiliates to advocate, for women’s economic empowerment in areas such as the need for equal pay”.
Alongside this, PSI has also been conducting research which has provided data prompting us to suggest transformative proposals linking an intersectional approach of wage discrimination to wage justice. For example, “Ontario Pay Equity Results for CUPE Service Workers in Ontario Hospitals: A Study of Uneven Benefits” and “Decent Work for Community Health Workers in South Asia: A Path to Gender Equality and Sustainable Development”.
Regarding campaigns, PSI has been taking an active role in supporting its affiliates when it comes to industrial action, like the recent Glasgow Women’s Strike over gender-based pay discrimination in public services, or when it comes to social dialogue, as during the “Equal Pay and Closing the Gender Pay Gap” initiative, led by UNISON in the UK, or the series of actions proposed by EPSU – PSI’s sister organisation for Europe – before the Action Plan (2018-19) adopted by the European Commission on gender pay gap.
Finally, PSI is also involved with Gender neutral job evaluation experiences in a joint effort with ILO-ACTRAV in Inter-America, with activities in Barbados, Chile and Peru.
In what way can EPIC be relevant to PSI organisation?
The EPIC network could provide guidance on how best could to advocate with specific governments to ensure collective bargaining rights for public services unions are fundamental conditions for progress to be made on equal pay.
As a member of the EPIC Secretariat, the ILO could follow up with call on the governments of Peru, Chile, Panama and Barbados on the lessons learned and recommendations made from the job evaluation experiences, not only in individual public enterprises or institutions, but also as new pay scales for the entire public sector.
EPIC could provide the technical support needed for PSI to organise a social dialogue roundtable with the governments of India, Pakistan and Nepal to build on joint strategies with PSI and its unions to settle a gender-neutral minimum wage for Community Health Workers (CHW).