International Relations

Since its inception, Histadrut has engaged in international relations within the trade union movement on international labour organizations and bilateral relations. The current global arena and the influence of globalization on the Israeli economy have an increasing impact on Histadrut policy.
Histadrut and its affiliates represent the workers of Israel in international organizations such as the International Labour Organization (ILO), the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), International Trade Union Confederation – Asia Pacific (ITUC-AP), and the Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD (TUAC).

Roles Histadrut officials fill include:

  • Mr. Arnon Bar-David – Vice President of the ITUC
  • Mr. Peter Lerner – ILO Governing Body (Substitute).
  • Ms. Avital Shapira – Titular of the Executive Committee ITUC, and Woman’s Committee of the ITUC, Titular of the Executive Committee ITUC-AP, and Woman’s Committee of the ITUC-AP.
  • Ms. Yael Egozi – Youth Committee of the ITUC – AP.

Global Union Federations

Histadrut affiliates maintain ongoing relations and represent workers of Israel with Global Union Federations hold titular positions in several GUFs and participate in congresses, conferences, and professional seminars.

Relationship with the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU)

Palestinian workers are among the most vulnerable and exploited workers in Israel. The Histadrut is committed to strengthening the relationship with the PGFTU and protecting and campaigning for the rights of the Palestinian workers employed in Israel.

The Histadrut provides legal consultation and holds vocational training that includes lectures in Arabic on workers’ rights, collective agreements, health, and safety. The collective agreements are translated into Arabic and distributed to Palestinian workers.

As part of the collective agreement, grievance committees are convened and settle thousands of labor disputes per year.

Since 1995 in a unique unparalleled agreement of solidarity between the PGFTU and Hustadrut, fifty percent of the treatment fees collected from Palestinian workers employed in Israel are transferred to the PGFTU. This unique agreement enables the PGFTU to assist the thousands of Palestinian workers, at the same promote the peace process and the fraternity between the Israeli and Palestinian workers, unions, and peoples.

Special Relationship with the Deutscher Gewerkschaftsbund – DGB – Germany

The Histadrut and the DGB – Germany have engaged in relations since before diplomatic relations between Israel and Germany existed. The unique relationship with stems from Germany’s responsibility for the Shoah, the systematic genocide of six million European Jews under National Socialism.

Today Histadrut and DGB cultivate the relationship based on joint young trade unionist exchanges and bilateral relations between different Histadrut districts and regional DGB.

Each year tens of Germans and Israelis visit Israel and Germany, respectively, and learn about Israel and Germany, history, trade unionism, and solidarity between the federations. Since its inception, thousands of Israelis and Germans have participated in the exchange program, building bridges and mutual understanding.

DGB-NRW Mission to Israel May Day 2022 (Shared on Instagram)

Ongoing Bilateral Programs with British and Australian Unions

Histadrut maintains ongoing and annual cooperation and solidarity missions with the British-Israel Trade Union Dialogue (BITUD), and with the Australia-Israel Labour Dialogue (ALID) organizations. The organizations conduct study missions that focus on building links between unions in Israel, the UK, and Australia, promoting the two-state solution, promoting solidarity and strong links between British, Israeli, and Palestinian trade unions, and encouraging the trade union movement to play a positive role in improving the lives of both Palestinians and Israeli workers.

Histadrut, BITUD and ALID meeting 2019

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