Teachers in Tunisia have sent a message of solidarity to their colleagues in the UK, via the menasolidarity website. Their message reads: 

  Dear friends and comrades, The Tunisian trade union of secondary school teachers would like to show solidarity with the NUT and NASUWT strikes of 1st and 17th of October.   We consider that your struggle against the attacks on national pay, working conditions and pension is very similar to the struggle we are leading in Tunisia. The demands you are raising show that the neoliberal attacks against education are reaching equally the countries of the North and the South.   Long live the solidarity between teachers! Long live the international solidarity between teachers’ trade unions!   Lasaad Alyakoubi, General Secretary of the Tunisian trade union of secondary school teachers, UGTT (The Tunisian Trade Unions Federation.    

Teachers in Tunisia have been engaging in continuous struggle, both against low pay and poor conditions - with classes as large as 70 in many public schools - and linked to this, the increasing privatisation of education. The teachers have taken strike action, despite oppression by the security forces and mass arrests. Tunisian teachers were in the forefront of the revolution in that country in 2011 which sparked the so-called Arab Spring, yet despite the ousting of the old regime, the government still pursues the same International Monetary Fund dictated policies and continues oppressing the trade union movement.

Like teachers in the UK and around the world, who are engaged in struggle against cuts, poverty and neo-liberal education 'reform' policies, the Tunisian teachers also need our solidarity. To find out how to send a message to them, go here.

As is so often the case, teachers involved in the most intense struggle are the ones who understand best about the global nature of the fight which we are all facing to defend public education and build new democratic education systems all over the world. Recently, teachers in Mexico and Rio, engaged in fighting in both cases viciously oppressive security forces, have appealed for international solidarity. Please go to the Solidarity and Action page of this website to find out how you can respond to the latest calls.