European federations

The International department is responsible for co-ordinating the activities of Unite within the international trade union structures.

The European Industry Federations are important organisations that actively participate and influence European Union policy and legislation. They are often able to deal effectively with issues and topics that are directly associated with particular sectors through sector social dialogues. The Federations' structures also offer workers who are employed within the same multinational to work together.

IndustriALL EUIndustriALL- Europe
European trade unions from the manufacturing sectors of metal, chemical, energy, paper, mining and textiles have joined forces to create IndustriALL European Trade Union. With 7 million members in more than 230 organisations, IndustriALL-Europe is committed to building an even stronger European Trade Union Federation, to improve the conditions for the industrial workers and employees in Europe and to ensure that industrial manufacturing and development continues to be a cornerstone for growth and prosperity in the European countries. IndustriALL-Europe will develop strong common policies and strategies in major political areas  such as industrial policy, collective bargaining, company policy, and social dialogue.

IndustriALL -Europe will assume an even bigger role as a major player in European development. Working intensely with all relevant European structures: i.e. The European Commission, the European Parliament, the Economic and Social Committee, the European council, the European Court of Justice etc. and  will continue to engage in work with the European employers and trade organisations representing the industries that IndustriALL-Europe represent. 
More information

UNIGlobalUni Europa
UNI is the skills and services international launched on January 1, 2000. They are part of the trade union response to increasing economic regionalisation and globalisation and to the convergence of what were, in the past, separate industries. UNI encourages solidarity across borders, raises issues of common concern with employers, governments and international bodies - and promotes trade union rights worldwide. 

UNI has more than 900 affiliated unions in 140 countries around the world, representing more than 15 million members. UNI is a global organisation that talks to multi-national employers, to international organisations, to governments, to employer groups and to other trade union organisations. 

UNI organises itself into the following sectors:

  • Commerce 
  • Electricity
  • Finance 
  • Gaming
  • Graphical
  • Hair and Beauty
  • Media, Entertainment and Arts
  • Postal
  • Property Services
  • Social Insurance
  • Telecom
  • Tourism

More information .

ETF[1]European Transport Workers' Federation
The European Transport Workers' Federation (ETF) is a pan-European trade union organisation which embraces transport trade unions from the European Union, the European Economic Area and Central and Eastern European countries.

The ETF represents some three million workers from 39 European countries. The ETF has affiliated unions which organise workers in railways, road transport, maritime transport, ports and docks, inland navigation, civil aviation, fisheries and tourism services.

The activities of the ETF
The ETF operates as both the European region of the International Transport Workers Federation and as the transport federation of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC).

Its principal activity is to represent and defend the interests of transport workers throughout Europe. It formulates and coordinates trade union transport and social policy, organises concerted industrial activities, engages in education and training and conducts innovative research on a variety of subjects from workers' health and safety to employment impact studies.

The ETF is the recognised Social Partner in the European Social Dialogue and will represent the interests of transport workers across Europe vis-à-vis the European Commission and the Council of Ministers.
More information

EFBWEuropean Federation of Building and Woodworkers
The European Federation of Building and Woodworkers (EFBWW) is the European Industry Federation for the construction industry, the building materials industry, the wood and furniture industry and the forestry industry. The EFBWW has 50 affiliated unions in 17 countries and represents a total of 2,300,000 members. The EFBWW is a member organisation of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC).

The Federation's main task is to represent its affiliates in Europe and help them defend the rights and interests of the workers in the industries it covers. The EFBWW also provides a framework for union cooperation and the coordination of action taken in the industries they represent.

EFBWW activities are based on decisions taken and an action programme adopted at the General Assembly, which is held every four years. The action programme outlines the Federation's main activities and tasks. The main aspects of the current action programme are:

  • Social Dialogue
  • Labour market policy
  • Health and safety issues
  • Worker representation in multinational companies
  • Terms of employment
  • Social policy

More information

EPSUEuropean Federation of Public Service Unions
The European Federation of Public Service Unions is the largest industry federation within the ETUC. It speaks on behalf of over 216 public sector unions representing approximately 8 million organised workers in more than 36 European countries.

EPSU covers the various industries and different vocational categories within the public sector. Its aims are to deal with all aspects concerned with those employed in:

  • National, regional and local government authorities
  • Undertakings engaged in the production, distribution and supply of energy, gas and water
  • Health, environmental and social services
  • Educational, cultural and recreational services
  • Organisations of employees of international agencies established by associations of states or government authorities

Priorities of EPSU
The following areas of work have been highlighted as areas of priority for EPSU:

  • Enlargement
  • Services Directive
  • European Works Councils
  • Collective Bargaining
  • Working Time
  • Public Procurement

More information

EFFAT - European Federation of Trade Unions in the Food, Agriculture and Tourism sectors

EFFAT - European Federation of Trade Unions in the Food, Agriculture and Tourism sectors
EFFAT is the European Federation of Trade Unions in the Food, Agriculture and Tourism sectors resulting from a merger concluded between two European trade union federations - the ECF-IUF and EFA - on 11 December 2000.

As a European Federation representing 120 national trade unions from 35 European countries, EFFAT defends the interests of more than 2.6 million members towards the European Institutions, European industrial federations and enterprise management.

EFFAT is an autonomous European trade union federation. As a member of the ETUC, EFFAT promotes its members' interests in all European interprofessional issues jointly and with strength. As a regional organisation within the IUF, EFFAT also defends its members' interests world- and sector-wide.
In recent years EFFAT has set up European Works Councils in more than 100 transnational groups and has a successful social dialogue underway in - among others - the agriculture, hotel & restaurant, contract catering, sugar and tobacco sectors.

EFFAT supports its member organisations in Central and Eastern Europe to develop free and solid trade unions. For many years EFFAT has given its support to the sustainable development of agrofood and tourism policy in which ethical, social and ecological aspects are considered. Only safe and high quality food can also guarantee safe jobs and working conditions.
More information