De AOb is also committed to good working conditions and high-quality and accessible education outside the Netherlands. The union does this, for example, in developing countries where the quality of education is often too low.

The international trade union work of the AOb covers a very broad field. To start with, we do internationally what we also do in the Netherlands: just trade union work.

International union work

Decisions at the European level are increasingly influencing the course of events in the Netherlands and in our education sector. Ignoring it is not an option, because European decisions and global trends determine a large part of the room for maneuver that we have as a union. However, the AOb influence that latitude.

Decisions at the European level are increasingly influencing the course of events in the Netherlands and in our education sector.

How do we do that? The AOb does this, for example, in European trade union work, in an ETUCE context. ETUCE is the European region of the global Education International. This is not only a platform for meeting, coordination and exchange between European education unions, it is also the social partner of the European Commission in the field of education. It is a significant player in influencing European policy when it comes to education and the education labor market. The AOb is therefore part of the ETUCE board and is active in working groups, committees and joint projects.

Within Education International, within an Oeso context and within the FNV, the AOb also active. We link up with themes such as education for refugees or participate in discussions about our labor market or the education budget. Everywhere we bring experiences and information that are important for our own union work. And not unimportantly: we are building a large network and a strong international trade union movement.

International solidarity

We need that strong international trade union movement. All our work is based on solidarity, and that does not stop at a national border. In the Netherlands we have a lot of trade union freedom. In many places further on in the world, trade unions are in bad shape, with the position of teachers, education and the opportunities for children to go to school. Human and trade union rights are being violated in too many places.

De AOb tries to contribute to improving the situation by working with different unions in the world.

De AOb tries to contribute to improving the situation by cooperating with different unions in the world. Sometimes we do this directly with one union, sometimes with a coalition of organizations or within the FNV context. We look for the best options to meet the needs of our colleagues. The main thing is that the unions strengthen themselves, so that they can do more for their members and for education in their country. In this way unions from Eastern Europe learn how social dialogue works. In Suriname and Morocco our partner unions now have their own union trainers. In very diverse countries such as Albania, Mali, Nicaragua, Uganda and Zimbabwe, the unions ensured further professionalization of teachers, resulting in fewer pupils dropping out of school and disappearing into child labor.

When union rights are violated, for example when union leaders are harassed or arrested, we try to provide support for the union or colleagues in need. If desired, we advise, approach governments to protest, or provide financial support. We often work together with Dutch Embassies, and with ETUCE, Education International and the FNV.

Handy lesson packages

We use the experiences we gain in international work in teaching materials that are freely available to members and potential members. There are several teaching packages available. They are made for a target group of 10-14 years, but are used in practice in primary schools as well as in secondary education and MBO. Do you want to request a lesson package? Then fill in the form.

Where is the AOb member of?

Global FNV 
ETUC (European Trade Union Committee for Education)
Education International 
Stop Child Labor Coalition
Global Campaign for Education

Stay updated!

Do you want to stay informed about the international work of the AOb? Subscribe to the International Affairs newsletter via this link. The newsletter is published at least five times a year. For questions you can contact with the employees of the AOb.