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Women and Just Transition: Steps trade unions can take to promote gender justice

This paper explores how trade union bodies and their allies can support women workers by advocating for gender-inclusive just transition policies and ensuring their full representation in trade union policy, strategy, and activities.

The objective is to examine how the Norwegian Confederation of Trade Unions (LO Norway) and its partners can enhance and incorporate efforts towards gender equality within just transition processes.

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The paper draws on insights from trade unionists and their allies regarding union activities on just transition and gender equity. The analysis highlights the experiences of LO Norway partners in five countries: Colombia, Ghana, Peru, Philippines, and Thailand.

The paper begins by highlighting a critical concern—that the majority of current efforts geared at just transition are gender-neutral, and therefore inadvertently biased against women—and proposes a gender-transformative approach that addresses the disproportionate impact of climate change on women workers. The paper discusses various levels of engagement among unions, from basic educational activities to comprehensive advocacy for gender-equitable just transition. It also suggests seven types of activities for trade union bodies and solidarity organisations to advance efforts towards gender-inclusive just transition policies:

  1. Awareness-raising and sensitisation
  2. Strengthening capacity on links between gender equity and just transition
  3. Ensuring meaningful gender-diverse representation in just transition discussions
  4. Developing policy positions and translating them into projects and advocacy
  5. Institutionalising gender-equitable just transition in union structures
  6. Supporting the upskilling and career advancement of women workers
  7. Utilising analytical frameworks and monitoring tools
  8. Gathering evidence on the gendered impacts of just transition processes

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