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Government of Jordan dissolves Jordan Teachers’ Association, arrests union leaders

Education International (EI) has called on member organizations around the world to protest the dissolution of the Jordanian Teachers’ Association (JTA) and the massive dismissals of teachers, including 14 JTA leaders.  The Jordanian security forces again arrested and detained the leading members of the JTA in connection with World Teachers Day celebrations. Riot police were deployed to stop the peaceful demonstrations organized to denounce the crackdown on trade union rights.

The JTA was dissolved on December 31, 2020, by the Amman magistrate court. On September 29, 2021, the Attorney General rejected the appeal filed by the JTA against the union dissolution and one-year imprisonment of all 14 JTA board members.

The criminalization of legitimate trade union activities including marches and demonstrations is unacceptable. JTA used the opportunity of World Teachers’ Day to denounce their continued judicial harassment. JTA also asked for the lift of all barriers preventing teachers from exercising their right to freedom of association and collective bargaining.

The Jordanian government has been using emergency laws enacted during the pandemic to judicially harass union members, teachers, and education workers. Employment regulations for civil servants have also been diluted to make it easier to terminate their employment. At least 65 teachers have been forced to retire early.

At the request of the Canadian Teachers’ Federation, OSSTF/FEESO sent a letter of protest to the Prime Minister of Jordan and the Minister of Education calling on them unconditionally reinstate the dismissed leaders of the JTA, lift the suspension of JTA union activities, and guarantee the fundamental rights and democratic freedoms of all educators and workers.  In addition, OSSTF/FEESO sent a message to Canada’s Ambassador to Jordan, Mark Gwozdecky, to initiate a dialogue on these issues.

LabourStart, in partnership with Education International, has set up an email for members and the public to send a message to the Government of Jordan denouncing their actions against the JTA.

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