On 19-21 June 2017, the Trade Union of Education and Science Workers of Ukraine (TUESWU) and the Trade Union of Workers in Education and Science (OZPŠAV) held a joint roundtable “Achievements and Challenges of the Education Trade Unions”. The meeting took place in Uzhgorod, Ukraine.

TUESWU was represented by its President Georgiy Trukhanov and heads of regional organisations. The Slovak delegation headed by the OZPŠAV President Pavel Ondek also included vice presidents in charge of primary, secondary and higher education and heads of regional organisations and organisations at universities.

Participants presented their organisations' education systems, activities, achievements and current challenges of trade union work and social partnership in Ukraine and Slovakia. In particular, they discussed the ongoing negotiations between Slovak authorities and OZPŠAV about raising wages for teachers and education support personnel.

Outside of the roundtable discussions, the leaders of the Ukrainian and Slovak education’ trade unions visited the Uzhgorod National University, one of the major universities at national level in Ukraine with more than 14 thousand students of different nationalities. Participants learned about the international cooperation of the university and activities of the local trade union organisation. In the afternoon, participants visited Uzhgorod Secondary School specialising in Slovak language and the Centre of Slovak Culture.

At the end of the meeting, a Cooperation Agreement was signed between the TUESWU and OZPŠAV. Presidents who stressed that the Slovak-Ukrainian ties have long-standing traditions and that the cooperation between two organisations will benefit educators and students on both sides of the border. Georgiy Trukhanov concluded the meeting saying: “It was here in Uzhgorod, where the symbolic door to visa-free Europe for Ukrainians was opened by the EU Presidency on 14 June this year. And today, with Pavel Ondek, we are opening a new page in the history of relations between the education trade unions of our countries.”

zakarp