By Vicky Smallman, Canadian Labour Congress
Shirley Friesen (Professionnal Institute of the Public Service of Canada) and I are holding down the fort for #canlabfem this week, and it has been a tough slog. Russia and their allies have been working hard to water down the agreed conclusions as much as possible. Most of the education stuff is done, there are some good paragraphs on unpaid care. The ILO language is still in play and there remains considerable resistance, particularly in the language around implementation. There are some huge gaps in the text - no reference to child labour, poor language on mirgrant workers (so far), nothing about casualization or the transformation of work (despite the session title). We aren't getting updated text so I can't really share anything - sorry about that.
The facilitation has been a challenge. The delegates don't have updated text, she is going super fast and they are having trouble keeping track of it all.
Negotiations ended early on Monday night and went late on Tuesday - Shirley stuck it out until after midnight. Yay Shirley! At 6pm on Tuesday security tried to kick out everyone who had a T pass from the building. They managed to resist, but served notice that we would be kicked out the following night. So on Wednesday we tried to raise a fuss with UN Women, and prepared to be here in force at 6pm to see if we'd be kicked out.
Wednesday afternoon the facilitator moved negotiations to the ECOSOC chamber - a problematic thing because non-delegates do not have access to the hallways outside the room's entrance. UN Women spent a lot of time working on our behalf to let us stay, and around 7 they got us up to the 2nd floor outside ECOSOC. But at 8 we were told we had to go, and were escorted out of the building.
We got a letter out for signatures right away, got 782 signatories and sent that off to the CSW chair and UN Secretary General. Tonight it seems we are able to stay, and they moved the meeting back to CR4 so we could have better access.
We are settled in for a long night here.