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Education International partners TEWU to promote welfare, safety of union members


The Teachers and Educational Workers’ Union (TEWU) of TUC in partnership with Education International (EI) has taken steps to improve the welfare and safety of the union’s members across the country.

According to the union, it has set up an initiative to provide continuous updates on the impact of Covid-19 on Education Support Personnel.

The partners presented Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to members to contain the Covid-19 pandemic in schools.

In all, about 10,500 customized hand sanitizers and 125,000 pieces of disposable face masks will be distributed across the country, especially among its vulnerable members such as Cooks, Security personnel, Janitors, Pantry men and women, Gardeners, numbered about 10,000.

General Secretary of TEWU, Mark Dankyira Korankye, announced this in Accra at the launch of EI-TEWU Covid-19 Initiative to serve as a complementary strategy to the government’s fight and mitigation of the impact of Covid-19 in the school environment.

Mr Korankye said the initiative was timely and responsive given the surge in Covid-19 cases in the secondary schools in the wake of the new delta variant.

He said the gesture, which benefitted 25 per cent of the total number of 40,000 members, was the first phase of the initiative and hoped to serve everybody in subsequent roll-outs.

Mr Korankye said the closure of schools by the government was key in containing the spread of the virus in the early period of the outbreak of the pandemic.

He observed that the virus had affected effective teaching and learning, saying the virtual learning adopted by most schools is not user-friendly to most students coupled with poor internet connectivity, especially in deprived areas.

Globally, Covid-19 has greatly affected the world of work.

The International Labour Organization report on the impact of the Covid-19 in the world of work revealed that about 255 million representing 8.8 per cent of people working as full time-equivalent jobs, lost their jobs in 2020.

The impact of the Covid-19 has not only affected the economic frontiers of countries but also the social space including education.

The General Secretary urged government to involve the teacher unions in consultation meetings towards coming out with measures to ensure that teaching and learning is not much disrupted.

He said most tertiary institutions had resorted to the shift system where some students at various levels are in schools whiles others stay home.

Mr Korankye said evidence gathered on the impact of Covid-19 on TEWU members Education Support Personnel revealed that some members in the private schools suffered job loss to pay reduction while those working in the public sector did not suffer any job loss.

“TEWU’s support to our members is not only confined in negotiations of salaries and conditions of service but the overall welfare of our members, including their safety and health,” he said.

He commended government for acquiring vaccines for the populace and appealed that the roll out of the vaccination should be equitably done, having the vulnerable in mind.

Finance officer, Mr Yussif Abubakari pledged the organization’s continuous support to work with partners to undertake such initiatives to contain the virus in schools.

He encouraged all and sundry to adhere to the safety protocols outlined by the government to mitigate the effects of the pandemic.

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