Wednesday, April 09, 2003


By now you've all heard about SARS -- Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome.

As of this morning, according to the WHO, 2,671 cases in 17 countries have been reported, with a total of 103 deaths.

Unions around the world have been reacting to the crisis in different ways. While health care unions are putting out information to their members on how to protect themselves, unions in the airline industry have taken strong positions -- in some cases calling for bans on flights to countries like China which are most affected by the illness.

Labourstart is now running more than 30 such news stories from trade unions in Canada, Japan, New Zealand, and the Netherlands on our brand new page devoted to trade unions and the SARS crisis, here:

It is extremely important that trade unionists, particularly those involved with health and safety issues, be informed. You need to know what other unions are doing and thinking.

One of the sad things you'll learn upon visiting our page is that the first reported Western victim of SARS to die in China last week was Pekka Aro. Pekka was an outstanding trade union figure and a pioneer of use of information technology by the international trade union movement. There are several links to the story of Pekka's life (and tragic death) on LabourStart's SARS page.
From Rory O'Neil, Hazards Magazine