Transport workers all over the world belong to the group of workers who are probably most exploit from the negative effects of globalisation and the aim of the industry that transport costs should be close to zero. This picture is true along the great transport corridors from the production plants in Asia to the consumers in Europe or anywhere else in the world. However, this could also mean that transport workers are powerful when it comes to organize protests and trade union action, because they deliver the necessary service which makes the fragmentation of work possible.
The situation of the workers does not reflect that. The differences between the organization of the worker in the sector are deeper as they may look. The International Transport Workers Federation (based in London) and the European Transport Workers Federation (based in Brussels) have established a good basis to strengthen the workers and to organize action.
On the other hand, the transport sector plays also a crucial role when it comes to the armament before war. The invasion in Iraq has shown that private logistic enterprises have already taken over the work from the military. Thousands of civil workers are used for a morally difficult task and put into a non calculate risk. Resistance is difficult. Only a few cases from train drivers in Great Britain have shown the limited possibilities. One possible protest is through broad alliances between unions and the civil peace movements. The effect was seen on February 15, 2003.
Already existing trade unions campaigns and good practice examples of close cooperation between NGO’s and trade unions, ITF campaign on Flag Of Convenience, which is build on the solidarity between port workers and seafarers, new strategies of the ITF and ETF towards the logistic chain, world wide protests of transport workers against the war, actual resistance in GB and Greece.
Organizing the unorganised ; solidarity campaigns ; clear knowledge of the sector and the relevant actors (e.g. FOC-Campaign) ; trust building ; strong organizational background ; joint consumer - worker campaigns ; pan-European structure of the ETF.