English as an Additional Language lessons for trade unionists

Seventy per cent of the world’s websites are in English. Some 1.5 billion people are English learners. There are thousands of trade unionists trying to learn English in order to more effectively participate in the work of the labour movement. They deserve assistance.

RadioLabour is proposing to build a global service which can help English-learning trade unionists participate more successfully in their international labour organizations and understand the movement’s views about issues such as decent work, equality, climate change, social justice and more. It will include an audio newscast, scripts in English and many other languages, plus an English language lesson - all based on trade union issues and activities.

Weekly English language newscasts

A radio programme aimed at trade unionist English learners will be broadcast every Monday. It will use the principles of the Slow English movement: a slower pace of speaking, less-difficult vocabularies and more easily understood sentences. All the news presented will be sourced from sites in the labour movement including the International Trade Union Confederation, the Global Unions and major national unions plus the International Labour Organization. The programmes will run approximately 5 minutes.

Newscast scripts will be supplied

The scripts for the newscasts will be made available for people to study along with the audio. These scripts will be translated into French, Spanish, German, Tagalog and Ukrainian. More languages will be added.

An English language lesson

An English language lesson based on the newscast will be supplied with every programme. The lessons will focus on English-language basics but with a particular emphasis on the terms used by labour organisations. The lessons will be taught by a certified English as an Additional Language (EAL) teacher.

A free of charge service

RadioLabour’s English lessons will be provided free of charge. The cost of the service is significant but it is hoped that foundations, labour unions and other organisations will contribute.

A working prototype

To see how the service will work visit: EAL lesson 1


RadioLabour has been broadcasting daily radio newscasts for the international labour movement since 2010. It has the capability to provide the service and the experience needed to keep it operating.

It’s a question of fairness

The international labour movement does its best to provide its members with content in languages other than English. But 75 per cent of the world’s population speak 20 languages and the movement cannot support them all. It is only fair that trade unionists who are not mother-tongue English be supported in their efforts to learn the language as they try to better participate in the labour movement.

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A prototype first EAL lesson is here:
First EAL lesson

Please help by signing a petition calling for the
establishment of RadioLabour's EAL lessons here:
EAL for trade unionists petition

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