York & District Trades Union Council News Play Fair Qatar – TUC campaign for decent working conditions for World Cup workers

Play Fair Qatar – TUC campaign for decent working conditions for World Cup workers

Please see the message below from TUCJCC Secretary Tom Mellish:

Dear Colleagues

The TUC is asking for your support in promoting our new campaign around the 2022 Qatar World Cup, by promoting our social media work and encouraging members and contacts to participate in the campaign (see below).

The TUC has launched the campaign – “Playfair Qatar” – to draw football fans into the protests against Qatar’s treatment of the workforce building the infrastructure for its 2022 World Cup. The campaign will hopefully complement other campaigns already running by bringing in new allies. Fans – many of whom are also trade unionists, of course – are as outraged as anyone that Qatar’s lax health & safety and repressive “kafala” laws are likely to lead to 4,000 deaths before the 2022 World Cup begins. Fans are considered such an important constituency in the battle of the hosting of the World Cup that Qatar has paid a PR agency to set up an allegedly grass roots blog that also serves as a platform for character assassinations of anyone criticising the country.

We, on the other hand, are working with organisations like the Football Supporters’ Federation to get the word out that Qatar’s new laws and promised regulations mean nothing if they’re not enforced, and that pressure must be maintained until we see proof of change (preferably through the legalisation of unions for migrant workers).

The ultimate aim is to build a broad coalition of support to help with future union campaigning and lobbying aimed at construction companies, sponsors and governments.

In discussion with the fans’ groups, we have developed a photo action to allow football fans to express very simply their support for the campaign and get them involved.

We are seeking photos from:

  • Groups of fans, hopefully outside matches or at least stadiums
  • Individual fans (in team tops) or groups of fans from offices, branches etc
  • Fans from rival teams “uniting” over the issue (as in the example above)
  • Recreational teams before matches
  • and indeed any other ideas you might have.

We’ve put the basics in place, and several fans’ groups have agreed to participate, but we need more help to the promote the campaign.

Please do anything you can to spread the word about the action and encourage people to send in photos. If you’d like to discuss anything do get in touch – we are in the early days and there is still plenty of scope to develop the campaign.

The campaign website – very much focused on drawing in fans – is www.playfairqatar.org.uk . It would be very helpful if you could also like us on Facebook and follow & promote the Twitter feed @PlayfairQatar

The simple message signs can be downloaded here. Photos can be sent to photos@playfairqatar.org

You should send your photos to my work colleague Stephen Russell in the TUC’s European Union and International Relations Department or contact him if you have any queries about the campaign and how you and your trades union council can participate.

Stephen can be contacted on 020 7467 1395 or email srussell@tuc.org.uk or write to him here at Congress House.

Thank you very much indeed.

Tom Mellish
TUCJCC Secretary
Trades Union Congress
Congress House
Great Russell Street
London WC1B 3LS
020 7467 1380

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