ASPIRE Network- Michael Young


Aspire Network: Launching of My Vision for My Fiji Video

The International Youth Day celebration on 12th August 2013 was held at UNDP Conference room, Kadavu House, at 9am. About 30 Youth representative from different Organizations were present at the Launch in celebration of IYD; CCF APTC WRM UNDP were some of the many groups involved.

The programme began with a Youth song composed by local talent Natalie Raikadroka followed by the introduction and the launch of the video with Young Leaders view of their Vision for Fiji.

I have participated as one of the young Organizers for decent work among young Fijians which will then be broadcasted on You-tube and other websites.

The even also involved  formal discussions on youth issues and youth organizations on how to serve young people’s interests effectively with  the limited resources available. There was also a need for readily available funds  for Youth Organizations to carry out their objectives. Below were suggestions and ideas proposed by young leaders who attended the programme.

Proposed Designing Youth Programs

  1. Mobilizing Young People
  2. Engaging between Disability
  3. More funding and program for mental health
  4. TOT for Youth groups
  5. Peace forum
  6. Youth design curriculum that includes mental health, disability, Employment rights etc
  7. Empower youths and know your audience
  8. Youth leaders to encourage youths to engage
  9. Capitalizing on young people talents
  10. Building partnership among youth to share skills and knowledge
  11. Creating more jobs for young people
  12. Mentors instead of role models
  13. Design a template that works for us in the pacific
  14. Training of representative from each province
  15. Maintain peace and work together as youths, trying to archive a certain goal and a better future.

 FTUC ORGANIZER: Michael RJ Young In Solidarity

IDEA Project


Include Disability and Employ this Ability (IDEA)

Fiji Trades Union Congress Constitution Preamble (C) state that;

The FTUC will;

(c) support and pledges solidarity with all working people irrespective of gender, creed, race, ethnic origin, colour, place of origin, sexual orientation, birth, primary language, economic status, age and disability.

The IDEA project was launched on June 4th by the Fiji Peoples Disabled Federation and on the 18th of July; I was invited to be part of the survey launch where we were informed that the employment of persons with disabilities (PWD) in Fiji is reported by the Ministry of Labour to be 3,964. The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that there are more than 120,000 persons in Fiji living with a disability, of these, it is reasonable to expect that more than 30,000 adults are able to undertake employment.

People with disabilities are the most vulnerable to human rights abuses, and FTUC through its leaders has through its history championed the cause of human rights, I urge you, the youth to take up this challenge and protect those that are already in the workforce.

I urge us, the youth wing of FTUC to reach out and protect the rights of those disabled working within your respective unions and those that are not unionised. We must make a stand and help advocate the viability of including those with disabilities in employment wherever capable.


In solidarity. Matthew YLF & FTUC Organizer Michael

Workshop For Union Officials and IR Practitioners

FTUC will hold a  workshops early next month for Trade Union Leaders and IR Practitioners.

The main objectives of the workshop is to address issues relevant to IR Procedures based on the ERP, Lodgement of Disputes and Grievances and other related issues .

More details can be found through the following link and the FTUC looks forward to a busy week from the 6th – 8th of November.

Workshop Circular

Unions Welcome EU Help with 2014 Elections

FTUC’s National President, Daniel Urai has revealed in an interview with Radio Australia that the unions appreciate EU’s promise to help the Fiji government with the 2014 elections.

Bro. Urai was interviewed with SODELPA’s Dr. Tupeni Baba and said that the government should develop a positive perspective about the EU offer to observe the elections and not have a negative outlook on the issue.

More on the interview can be found through the following link:

The Lampedusa tragedy reminds us of palpable policy failures on migration (ILO Statement)

(copied from ILO)

Type: Statement
When: 06 October 2013
Where: Geneva

The recent tragedy off the coast of Lampedusa, resulting in the loss of many lives, is once again a poignant reminder that the quest for better and safer livelihoods and decent jobs is taking on more desperate proportions. It is a bitter irony that this incident took place while the United Nations General Assembly High-level Dialogue on International Migration and Development, held in New York on 3-4 October 2013, was discussing how best to maximize the benefits of international migration for development, including for migrants themselves. It is through human beings – men, women and children, and their families, that migration and development connect.

The Lampedusa tragedy is a sharp reminder that the international community must act together urgently to make migration safe and fully respectful of human rights.

We must find ways to create more regular migration channels to ensure that real labour market needs, including those at lower-skilled levels, are met in destination countries, in collaboration with the real actors of the world of work – labour ministries, employers’ and workers’ organizations. This will require a profound policy shift in many countries: a much more refined balance between border policies and labour migration policies; more inclusive policymaking on migration, involving a broader range of ministries and stakeholders; and a huge effort on the part of governments, social partners and civil society, to change negative public perceptions.

If we fail, the High-level Dialogue would have been in vain.

(Picture: UK Telegraph)