(KHMU Newsletter No. 1, February. 28)
The 24th Anniversary of the KHMU and the 2022 Annual Congress
The 24th Anniversary of the Korean Health and Medical Workers’ Union and the 2022 Annual Congress.
Struggles to implement the labor-government agreement, to make year 2022 the first year of normalization and institutionalization of industry-level bargaining
The KHMU(The Korean Health and Medical Union) decided to carry out protests across union branches nationwide during the presidential election campaign period to push for the actual implementation of the 9.2 labor-government agreement as well as normalization and institutionalization of the industry-level bargaining.
The KHMU(President Na Sun-ja) held a regular convention online from Feb 14 to 15, in which 229 in attendance out of 314 registered delegates made this decision. At the convention, delegates assessed the activities of year 2021 and approved settlement reports, while approving the year 2022 campaign plans and budgets as well as updating the articles of the organization in 11 connected conference rooms and the central meeting room of the KHMU building. They also adopted the statement of resolution at the same convention.
In the 2022 campaign plan deliberation, the delegates set a slogan: “Practical implementation of the 9.2 Labor-Government Agreement, normalization and institutionalization of industry-level bargaining, and vitalization of labor-centered progressive politics! Hope to the workplace and a just transition in society!”. Next, they decided to carry out key projects for ▲industry-wide struggles to implement the 9.2 Labor- Government Agreement ▲ normalization and institutionalization of industry-level bargaining as well as industry-wide activities ▲ struggles for presidential and local elections as well as revitalization of progressive political movements.
The KHMU President Na Sun-ja said in the opening remarks, “We need to substantially change our workplace and resolve medical inequalities by strengthening our struggles for implementation of the 9.2 Labor-Government Agreement.” She also added, “At least one public hospital should be secured for every 70 medium level medical zones to resolve medical inequality between regions.” And she proposed a tour struggles nationwide at the end of April and early May to highlight local issues in relation to strengthening public healthcare, increasing a staffing level of medical workers and improving working conditions during the local elections.
Among the campaign plans discussed, the promotion of negotiations for unorganized workplaces stood out. This year, the KHMU, as the representative industrial union, will also promote “negotiation to secure basic working conditions for all health and medical workers” in the sense of promoting industry-specific activities to improve the rights and interests of all health and medical workers. In other words, they will prepare a proposal for basic labor conditions to be applied to all health and medical workplaces, including workplaces without union members, and appeal to public opinion, fighting for core issues. The demands include working hours, overtime work, holidays, rest, vacation, emotional labor leave, labor safety measures, eradication of bullying, prohibition of night shift work for pregnant women, and protection of maternity. Based on these demands, they plan to carry out activities to urge social responsibility of hospital associations and medical associations.
The health and medical union also decided to hold a policy conference for three days from November 8 to 10 to diagnose the industrial union movement and seek future prospects and tasks.