AFT Resolution


WHEREAS, the American Federation of Teachers and the United Nations Staff Union (UNSU) maintain a unique partnership under a unity agreement whose goal is to give voice to United Nations employees’ rights and aspirations; and

WHEREAS, the administration of the United Nations has fallen gravely short in fully protecting worker rights in several areas, for example:

  • the administration unilaterally walked away from an established labor-management process for negotiating agreements over terms and conditions of employment;
  • the administration has deepened divisions among workers through its unfair determination of salaries and benefits;
  • U.N. employees continue to lack voice over the shape and direction of their careers, including choice of assignment and family security; and
  • the administration has consistently failed to protect employees who expose fraud and abuse within the U.N. system, where whistleblower policies are inconsistent, ineffective and weakened by arbitrary loopholes; and

WHEREAS, the United Nations, and all agencies and bureaus associated with the U.N., are obligated to bring employees under the protections afforded by the International Labor Organization Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work, and the fundamental conventions, “Freedom of Association and Protection of the Right to Organize (No. 87)” and “Right to Organize and Collective Bargaining (No. 98)”:

RESOLVED, that the American Federation of Teachers will respond to the unjust lack of worker protections among United Nations employees by applying all its resources to the goal of securing the full collective bargaining rights for all U.N. employees; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT, working with the UNSU, will assist in designing and implementing programs aimed at strengthening the UNSU’s capacity to protect its members’ rights, including workshops on organizing, communications, membership building, and advocacy skills; and

RESOLVED, that the AFT will continue its advocacy on behalf of U.N. employees and their union to the newly appointed secretary of state and U.S. ambassador to the United Nations.


Please note that a newer resolution, or portion of a resolution, may have superseded an earlier resolution on the same subject. As a result, with the exception of resolutions adopted at our most recent AFT convention, resolutions do not necessarily reflect current AFT policies.