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Sharan Burrow
Sharan Burrow is General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation.

Entries by Sharan Burrow

Refugee Crisis Elicits Compassion in People Yet Indifference From Government -- We Need Urgent G20 Leadership

(2) Comments | Posted November 13, 2015 | 3:59 AM


Security, rights and freedoms are under attack. Democratic space is shrinking and millions of people engulfed in conflicts fear for their lives, driving the greatest movement of refugees seeking safe haven since the Second World War.

Global military spending stands at almost $1.8...

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Nobel Prize Is an Award for the Power of Social Movements

(0) Comments | Posted October 9, 2015 | 2:19 PM

Every year in October there is a collective moment when the world thinks about peace, and the individuals and institutions who make peace happen.

The Nobel Peace Prize has traditionally put the spotlight on the work of stateswomen and men Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Barack Obama, civil rights...

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Back to the Future: Our Journey to Zero Carbon, Zero Poverty World

(0) Comments | Posted September 24, 2015 | 10:43 AM

In just a few weeks time on October 21, 2015, we'll be living in a world that was briefly imagined in the 1989 film Back to the Future II.

The iconic date, captured in a sequel to the time travelling adventure story gave a vision for the future...

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Why the Refugee Crisis Is an Economic Issue for the G20

(0) Comments | Posted September 3, 2015 | 2:09 PM

A few hundred miles away from where the G20 Labour and Finance Ministers are meeting in Turkey, the body of a young Syrian boy washed ashore. The images shocked the nation's people and indeed people throughout the world.

Three year old Aylan Kurdi, his five year old...

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Top 10 Worst Countries for Workers' Rights: The Ranking No Country Should Want

(2) Comments | Posted June 10, 2015 | 12:36 PM

If you're a labourer in the Gulf States, working under the draconian "kafala" system of modern-day slavery, the results of this year's Global Rights Index should come as no surprise.

The latest ranking of workers' rights includes the global top ten, of which no country should want to...

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Where's the Ref? FIFA -- A Sports Body Playing Without Rules

(1) Comments | Posted May 28, 2015 | 5:35 PM

Football, or soccer as it is known, is a game of two halves. It's a game with rules and a referee. FIFA, the governing body for football, follows neither the rule of law or has the oversight of a referee.

Hours after dawn raids rounded up seven FIFA officials in...

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Follow the Money: How Pension Fund Leaders Are Key to a Zero-Carbon Future

(2) Comments | Posted May 18, 2015 | 5:25 PM

To understand the complexities of our world, we're often told to follow the money and find a trail that can unlock a tangled web of interests.

The money that underpins our dependence on high-carbon assets and puts lives and livelihoods at risk has many masters.

One master is the...

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This May Day -- End Corporate Greed

(3) Comments | Posted May 1, 2015 | 5:08 PM

May 1 is a celebration of workers' rights. Known as Labor Day, May Day or International Workers' Day. A day observed by millions of people around the world with rites and traditions nearly a century old.

A few weeks ago on the outskirts of Manila a group of brave men...

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Davos Awakenings

(5) Comments | Posted January 22, 2015 | 8:41 AM

There is a story of catatonic patients who briefly wake up after being injected with a trial drug, before returning to catatonia.

The same awakening could be true for the gathering of elite business leaders every year in Davos at the World Economic Forum.

For one week a...

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Is the Global Economy Out of Time?

(3) Comments | Posted October 7, 2014 | 10:10 AM

As the World Bank and the IMF meet in Washington this week, people are asking, is the global economy finally out of time?

The financial institutions said once again 2014 could be the year the global economy emerged from six years of recession and slow growth. They were...

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A New Climate Economy Gives Hope to Millions of Workers

(3) Comments | Posted September 16, 2014 | 9:37 AM

8 billion people will share the planet by 2030.

These people are our family, our friends, our workmates and our neighbors. These people all depend on a healthy planet, a decent job and a secure income.

These are people like us.

Historically leaders have gone to war to...

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Will Rain Stop Play? G20 Team on the World's Economic Playing Field Face Nail-Biting End to Season

(4) Comments | Posted September 10, 2014 | 10:24 AM

Australia is known to many people for its sunshine and sporting prowess. But every so often rain stops play.

As a great sporting nation, Australia shows that the rules of fair play govern cricket pitches and the uniquely Australian ovals that host the national football code, Australian Rules.


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Corporate Power Must Be Tamed

(20) Comments | Posted May 18, 2014 | 4:47 PM

Seven years into an economic crisis that was born in America, but has left structural damage to the global economy and the global workforce, more than one in two working families in 14 countries that constitute half the world's population cannot keep up with the rising cost of living.


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The Case Against Qatar

(2) Comments | Posted March 16, 2014 | 8:00 PM

Images of football stadium workers sleeping ten to a room in squalid rooms and their dangerous cooking facilities provoked a furious response from authorities in Qatar after they were published in an ITUC report, The Case Against Qatar.

Refusing to take responsibility for the 1.4million workers in Qatar...

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G20 Finance Ministers in Need of Some Old 'Know-how': Jobs and Decent Wages

(13) Comments | Posted February 21, 2014 | 4:21 PM

Listening to optimistic talk of an economic recovery among the world's financial elites is a bit like hearing a smoker describe their latest heart attack as they light up another cigarette.

As G20 Finance Ministers and Central Bankers responsible for 85 per cent of the global economy prepare to meet...

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Which Side of History Will FIFA Be on in the March to End Slavery in Qatar?

(4) Comments | Posted February 17, 2014 | 7:00 PM

Two men with a passion for football sat alongside each other in an unlikely venue last week. Not in a stadium, on a football pitch, or in a sports bar. Instead they took the stage in a cavernous room in Brussels, home of the European Parliament.

Both men were...

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Qatar: A Conspiracy of Silence

(13) Comments | Posted October 4, 2013 | 9:55 AM

Governments, corporations, FIFA and even the UN willingly take billions of dollars of Qatari money and the price appears to be a blind eye to 21st century slavery.

Qatar is the wealthiest nation on earth with $88,222 per head of population. It is not a democracy rather it...

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What Would You Do If You Inherited the World's Richest Country?

(7) Comments | Posted June 24, 2013 | 1:27 PM

Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, has informed the ruling family of his decision to transfer power to his son, Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani.

Seen as more conservative than his larger than life father -- Sandhurst educated Tamim, 33, has a big robe to fill. With a per capita...

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What Secretary Kerry Won't See in Qatar

(5) Comments | Posted March 4, 2013 | 3:09 PM

On Wednesday John Kerry will cross the finish line of his first listening tour as Secretary of State. His last stop is Doha, Qatar, a small gulf state with a big problem.

In international politics Qatar is playing a leading role in regional peace and stability. From brokering peace talks...

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Looking for a Ray of Joy in Spain

(0) Comments | Posted February 25, 2013 | 9:39 AM

A few days ago a story was picked up in the international media about the collapse of the Spanish real estate company Reyal Urbis owing banks, businesses and workers $4.75 billion.

It is the second biggest filing in Spain since property company Martinsa Fadesa defaulted on...

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