|▲ Lee Hae-chan(second from right, front row), Chairman of the ruling Democratic Party and Kim Ju-young(second from left, front row), President of the Federation of Korean Trade Unions(FKTU) with other executive officers raise fists for a photo at the FKTU headquarters on September 5. (Provided by the Federation of Korean Trade Unions)|
|▲ The ruling Democratic Party Chairman Lee Hae-chan meets with the leadership of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions(KCTU) in the presence of union members holding the signs to call for the resolution of various pending labor issues at the KCTU headquarters on September 5. (Byeon Baek-seon/The Labor and World)|
Rep. Lee Hae-chan, the newly elected chairman of the ruling Democratic Party, made a visit to the Federation of Korean Trade Unions(FKTU) and Korean Confederation of Trade Unions(KCTU) on the same day of September 5, after his taking office on August 25. Chairman Lee reconfirmed his commitment made during the leadership election of the party congress to nominate an ex-unionist parliamentarian as a member to the Supreme Council of the ruling Democratic Party and promised to support the Economic, Social and Labor Council, a national social dialogue body, to reach a grand social compromise. Both trade union centers of the FKTU and KCTU made a request for the government to guarantee the trade union rights and ratify the unratified core ILO conventions to realize the construction of a society where labor is respected.
Chairman Lee said in his meeting with FKTU that "I made a pledge to nominate an ex-unionist parliamentarian as a member of the Supreme Council of the Democratic Party during the election debates among the candidates for the party chairmanship. And accordingly I will nominate a relevant person at the earliest, upon finishing the consultation with FKTU."
While mentioning that "despite some concerns the ongoing phase of low growth and low employment are weakening the driving force of the administration to implement the core agendas of state affairs," FKTU President Kim Ju-young said that "the income-led growth and the construction of a society with labor respected which are not only the policy philosophy of Moon Jae-in government but also the key tasks in the policy pact signed with FKTU should be further strengthened and pursued without setbacks through the democratization of economy, the increase of minimum wage, the guarantee of trade union rights, and the creation of jobs.
Chairman Lee in his meeting with the KCTU leadership, following his visit to FKTU, expressed his gratitude for the KCTU's decision to return to the social dialogue table among the representatives of labor, business and the government, and also ardently wished that "KCTU will be able to participate in the Economic, Social and Labor Council scheduled to be launched in October."
KCTU President Kim Myung-hwan said that "we desired Chairman Lee to listen to the desperate voices of the rank and file in our meeting with you," as a picketing inside the meeting room was organized to call for the "guarantee of basic labor rights" and the "cancellation of government decision for illegal union". He expressed his hope that "the ruling party will be attentive to the voices at the workplaces."
reported by Lee Eun-young
translated by Kim Sung-jin
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