Filipino Trade Unionist receives NASUWT International Solidarity Award
The NASUWT – the Teachers’ Union, has today presented its International Solidarity Award 2020 to Raymond Basilio, Secretary General of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers (ACT) in the Philippines.
The award has been presented to Mr Basilio, who has been subject to state-sponsored threats and harassment. There has been specific targeting of members of the ACT, including armed attacks on members amid a rising tide of violence in the country.
Members of ACT have been subjected to state-sponsored profiling, red-tagging, vilification, harassment, intimidation and threats. This is part of a larger trend where progressive movements and individuals critical of the Duterte administration are being targeted.
The NASUWT International Solidarity Award recognises the bravery and commitment of individuals and organisations around the world in promoting human and trade union rights, advocating for quality education for all, and defending the status of teachers. The NASUWT International Solidarity Award honours those who uphold our shared, universal trade union values of solidarity, equality and democracy.
Previous recipients of the Award include: Jalila al Salman - Bahrain (2013); Ahmed Jassam Salih Al-Shiblawi – Iraq (2014); Korean Teachers Union – South Korea (2015); Egitim Sen – Turkey (2016); Mahdi AbuDeeb – Bahrain (2017); Esmail Abdi – Iran (2018) and Roberto Baradel – Argentina (2019).
Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of the NASUWT, said: “Raymond has been a vocal advocate of the rights of all children to quality education and the rights of teachers. His story is a stark reminder that trade unionists around the world continue to be targeted in their fight for freedom of expression, social justice and human rights.
“The NASUWT is deeply concerned and dismayed at the continuing state-sponsored threats and harassment that Raymond and his members have been subjected to, including profiling, red-tagging, vilification, harassment, intimidation and threats.
“With our colleagues at Amnesty International, Education International and the International Trade Union Confederation, the NASUWT and teachers throughout the UK will continue to press for the Government of the Philippines to allow ACT to carry out their legitimate trade union activities without fear of harassment or imprisonment.
“We hope that the NASUWT International Solidarity Award will help to maintain a spotlight on the actions of the Government in the Philippines and provide reassurance that the NASUWT, together with the wider international community, continues to support Raymond and the work of the Alliance of Concerned Teachers, as a champion of the rights of teachers and students.”