JILAF, together with the Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC), held one-day workplace seminars of the POSITIVE workplace environment improvement program in Chennai in the state of Tamil Nadu, India, on April 5, 7, and 12. (POSITIVE stands for Participation-Oriented Safety Improvements by Trade Union Initiative.)
In workplace seminars, the 26 trade union leaders (two each from 13 workplaces) who received training as POSITIVE trainers in a four-day basic seminar held in November 2013 and a four-day training seminar held in February 2014 serve as instructors, giving talks about the basic POSITIVE program to union members in their own workplaces for a day. This time, the seminars were held in 3 of the 13 workplaces; each seminar was attended by 30 union members, for a total of 90 persons. JILAF sent experts and staff to monitor the seminars and give appropriate advice to the trainers.
The POSITIVE program is implemented with financial support from the Grant Assistance for Japanese NGO Projects scheme of the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This was the second time for the POSITIVE program to be held in India; the first time was in the city of Coimbatore, also in the state of Tamil Nadu, in fiscal 2011.
The objective of the program is to foster trainers so that trade unions in developing countries, where workplace health and safety tend to get neglected, can take the initiative and autonomously bring about improvements. The program consists of four elements: (1) the storage and handling of materials; (2) workplace safety; (3) productivity improvement; and (4) health and welfare. Because of the program’s low cost and immediate effectiveness, it is easy for workers to learn and easy for employers to accept as well.
In these workplace seminars, trainers who had attended the basic seminar and training seminar served as instructors to disseminate the knowledge they had acquired so far and give examples of workplace improvements that had actually been made. The union members who attended the workplace seminars listened enthusiastically to the talks and actively engaged in the issues assigned to them. Furthermore, at all three workplace seminars, representatives of management attended the opening ceremonies and expressed their expectations of the program, which shows that the POSITIVE program is contributing to the building of good industrial relations.
In the three-day evaluation seminar, which will be the final seminar in the program, there are scheduled to be reports of improvement proposals made by the trainers and participants after the workplace seminars and actual examples.
|04/05||Sat||Workplace Seminar 1: Mahle I. P. Ltd.|
|04/07||Mon||Workplace Seminar 2: India Japan Lighting|
|04/12||Sat||Workplace Seminar 3: Panasonic Home Appliances|