The Jordanian Teachers’ Syndicate and Human Rights Defenders
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Report JTS David Lane
Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) have received renewed attention in the past few decades. This report will be about the recent events in Jordan surrounding the Jordanian Teachers’’ Syndicate (JTS). The Jordanian Teachers’ Syndicate is Jordan’s main Teachers’’ trade union. It was established in 2011 and has around 140,000 members. The JTS became especially relevant after it called a strike in September 2019, the country’s largest public sector strike, which disrupted learning for around 1.5 million students. The main demand behind these protests were the stagnating wages within the public sector. This report will attempt to answer the following question: can teachers in Jordan and the JTS be considered Human Rights Defenders (HRDs), attending to internationally recognised criteria for HRD status as gathered in the Universal Declaration on HRDs? Despite the fact that some may regard their demands as illegitimate in the context of the current economic stagnation in Jordan and the common accusation of being motivated by political Islam, this report argues that the members of the JTS are a notable example of HRDs.
Feature image retrieved from the BBC