Articles: News

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Reply from the Director General to the Section’s letter

Category : News

Section’s letter

M. Guy Ryder
Directeur général
Genève, le 26 février 2019

Monsieur le Directeur général,

Le Bureau de la Section des anciens a pris connaissance en ce début d’année de la Directive du Bureau IGDS Numéro 533 (Version 1) datée du 10 décembre 2018. De même, il a eu copie de la lettre signée par plusieurs retraités et adressée A vous-même relative aux préoccupations des retraités concernant l’accès au BIT et à certains de ses services dont l’intranet.

Si nous comprenons le souci de sécurisation de l’accès au bâtiment, nous avons toutefois le sentiment que les retraités sont de plus en plus écartés et éloignés du BIT. Nous espérons, bien sûr, nous tromper. Les dispositions décrites dans la Directive IGDS 533 ont été discutées lors des deux dernières réunions de notre Bureau, instance de direction de la Section.

Nous nous reconnaissons dans l’énoncé du paragraphe 4 “Le BIT met A la disposition des fonctionnaires et autres collaborateurs, ainsi que des personnes qui participent aux activités de l’Organisation, une place de parking…”. Les activités de la Section des anciens participent à la vie du BIT, et en cette année de Centenaire nous avons répondu présent aux différentes sollicitations et coopérations suscitées au sein de l’Organisation. Les retraités bénéficient d’un badge “courtoisie”. Toutefois nous nous étonnons que ceux qui régulièrement consacrent des temps très importants de leur vie de retraité aux services des autres, soient considérés comme des “visiteurs” en franchisant avec leur voiture le contrôle. On constate que le paragraphe 10 limite à présent le temps de stationnement de 8h A I7h pour les visiteurs et que le paragraphe 15 accentue cette disposition pour les retraités.

Les retraités peuvent participer aussi aux activités de diverses sections de Sport et Loisirs du BIT dont les horaires dépassent le créneau proposé. Nous nous félicitons que les retraités puissent y participer ce qui maintient un lien entre des générations de fonctionnaires. Il ne faudrait pas que les dispositions mises en place et futures éliminent les retraités de ces activités, du fait de contraintes d’horaire. Certains retraités viennent au BIT pour des travaux de recherche et contribuent à écrire l’histoire du BIT. Nous en publions régulièrement des articles dans notre bulletin Message. A l’occasion du Centenaire nous avons reçu des dizaines de contributions. Ces retraités souhaitent bénéficier de possibilités d’accès au BIT  moins contraignantes que celles prévues dans la Directive ainsi que de pouvoir utiliser plus aisément l’Intranet.

Nous avons déjà eu l’occasion d’évoquer avec le service de Sécurité du BIT les problèmes liés à l’accès au bâtiment des conjoints de retraités et de membres de famille s’occupant de parents Ages et dépendants. Peu de progrès ont été faits et les dispositions récentes ne vont qu’accentuer les contraintes d’accès au bâtiment pour se rendre A la Caisse maladie est parfois problématique.

Aussi, le Bureau de la Section des anciens souhaite que les dispositions trop contraignantes soient revues au regard des relations que les retraités ont pu depuis un siècle entretenir avec l’Organisation ou ils ont travaillé. Un dialogue devrait pouvoir être instauré avec l’administration afin que les questions liées à l’accès des retraités au bâtiment et à certains services puissent être discutées avant que des décisions ne soient prises et imposées au détriment d’eux.

Recevez, Monsieur le Directeur général, l’expression de mes sentiments les meilleurs.

Frangois Kientzler Secrétaire exécutif du Bureau de la Section des anciens

CC
Mark Levin, Directeur, HRD
Catherine Comte, Présidente, Syndicat du personnel de I’OIT
Fiona Rolian, Co-administrateur, ILO friends Facebook group Gerry
Rodgers, retraité

Car Parking Policy at ILO Headquarters – from 10 January 2019

(Extract from Directive IGDS Number 533 (Version 1))
ILO retirees may only use the ILO car parks when issued with a visitor’s pass, in order to park their vehicles while visiting the ILO during working hours or for a specific event. Such vehicles may not be left in the car parks other than during these times. Visitors’ passes shall be valid from 8am to 5pm.

Any person who contravenes these rules will be requested to comply with the rules without delay. If he/she fails to do so, his/her vehicle may be immobilized or impounded at the owner’s expense.

Any vehicle owner who fails to respect the terms above may be subject to a penalty (wheel clamp or impoundment of the vehicle at the owner’s cost and risk). The ILO declines any responsibility for any damage caused during the impoundment or clamping of any vehicle in violation of these rules.

Charges and fees

Impoundment of a vehicle that is causing an obstruction, is badly parked or unauthorized According to the official scale of charges of the Geneva authorities through the following link:

http://www.lexfind.ch/dta/6216/3/rsg_H1_05p08.html.1.html

Wheel clamping of a vehicle that is causing an obstruction, is badly parked or unauthorized CHF80 basic fee

 


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Taxation (continued): Withholding tax in France from January 2019

Category : News

In the previous Message (No. 63-2018) we raised the issue of changes to be made from January 2019 for residents in France who are liable to income tax. Over the summer there were concerns about the state’s technical ability to implement the proposed reform, but a final decision has now been made that it will in fact be implemented correctly.

For employees, tax will be deducted at source by the employer who already pays the many employer and employee social security contributions, and who will now also have the new obligation to retain the tax that the employee owes to the Tax Authorities. But since retirees no longer have an employer, their tax will be directly deducted from their bank account. This should not significantly change the prevailing practice for the majority of retired taxpayers who have already opted for a monthly payment system. The deduction will be made over 12 months and cash payments will be prohibited above an annual tax of 300 euros.

The amount of the tax that will be levied monthly is shown on the tax notice which should have been received at the end of the summer of 2018 and payments will begin in January 2019. However, this does not change the obligation to make the annual tax declaration in spring 2019. Taxpayers will continue to receive their pre-filled declaration by mail or will be able to consult it on their personal space which they may access on the Ministry’s website (http://www.impots.gouv.fr). By the end of the summer at the latest, or very quickly for those who make the declaration by Internet, taxpayers will know the amount of the effective tax for 2019 and the projected tax for 2020. The Tax Authorities will make a refund if too much has been paid or if requested to repay the balance. The Tax Authorities are encouraging taxpayers to create their personal space on the internet to do the entire administrative process: declaration, payments, possible changes, etc. But the paper declaration remains possible even if the goal is to have zero paper.

We advise you to read the information sheet attached to your tax notice which you should have received at the end of the summer of 2018 and which gives detailed information on the questions that you may have on this subject. A manager from the Bellegarde sur Valserine Tax Authorities will speak at the ILO Pre-retirement Seminar, Tuesday 13 to Friday November 16 2018, during a session focusing on taxation in France. Please also be aware that it is always possible to contact the Tax Authorities for your own area for additional information on your particular situation.


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Meeting with the Regional union delegates (Geneva, Friday, October 26, 2018)

Category : News

On 26 October, François Kientzler, Executive Secretary, and Abdoulaye Diallo, Deputy Executive Secretary, met with regional ILO Staff Union representatives (see below) in the presence of Catherine Comte, Union President. The delegates were in Geneva to attend the Union’s GA but also for working meetings with the Staff Union Committee and with the Director-General.

We wanted to meet with the delegates because we are concerned about, and attentive to, the situation of pensioners in the regions, and in particular that of retired local staff. A round table discussion allowed some crucial points to be raised, such as problems related to the delay in reimbursement of health costs but also the non-recognition of the SHIF insurance card by hospitals and health centres in numerous countries. This card includes a toll free number but in fact the number is not free in Africa. Retirees in Africa also have difficulty in accessing the offices where they worked; it would be desirable for an access card to be issued to them, in the same way as at Headquarters in Geneva. There are often serious delays in determining pension entitlements; the Section, in coordination with the Staff Union Committee, is available to help speed up the procedures with the Pension Fund.

The Section’s Executive Secretary hoped that, as is already the case in Dakar and Lima, retirees’ sections could be set up within the ILO Local or Regional Trade Unions. This would help maintain relations between local retirees; the lifetime membership fee for local staff is US $ 50. The Section’s website, which is regularly updated, allows retirees around the world to stay in touch. Visiting the site – no password is needed to access it – convinced delegates of its usefulness and the value of its content for retirees. The Geneva-managed site (http://www.anciens-bit-ilo.org) is ready to receive information from the regions in order to give it the necessary publicity. Former civil servants residing in the regions may also join a national union which brings together all retirees of the various international organizations. These national unions are generally adherents to FAFICS (Federation of International Civil Servants Associations).

Regional Stewards:

  • Africa: Roger Mavinga Nkambu (Abidjan)
  • Americas: Maria Elena Lopez Torres (Lima)
  • Asia and the Pacific: Razi Mujtaba Haider (Bangkok)
  • Europe and the Arab States: Rania Bikhazi (Europe and Middle East)

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SHIF: Settlement between ILO and the ITU

Category : News

UPDATE FROM THE DIRECTOR-GENERAL
18 July 2018

Dear colleagues,

I am writing to inform you of the outcome of a matter relating to the withdrawal of the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) from the Staff Health Insurance Fund (SHIF).

Following the ITU’s unilateral decision to withdraw from the SHIF and to provide health and accident insurance to its staff and retirees via a third party, a difference arose as to the share of the net assets of the SHIF, represented by the SHIF Guarantee Fund, that should be attributed to the ITU. In accordance with the agreement between the ILO and the ITU, the matter has been decided through arbitration.

The decision is that US$8.9 million of the $61 million available in the Guarantee Fund as at the date of ITU’s separation in May 2014, be transferred to the ITU together with a provision for interest calculated at 1.4 per cent per annum.

The ITU had initially claimed an amount of $18.6 million against the ILO’s figure of $1.8 million representing the net difference between contributions received in respect of ITU insured persons and benefits paid. The ILO’s proposal also reflected the accounting practices and audited financial statements that had been unchallenged by the governing bodies of the two organizations throughout the ITU’s association with the Fund.

The Arbitrator decided that in the absence of any clear legal basis to distribute the net assets, the distribution should be based upon the solvency parameters of the Guarantee Fund as established in the SHIF Regulations.

The transfer of these funds has had no immediate impact on the financial stability of the SHIF. It continues to be appropriately funded and to deliver insurance coverage to ILO insured persons. An actuarial study is being commissioned in order to review the medium to longer term financial outlook.

Guy Ryder


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Access to ILO building: retired former officials and their families

Category : News

RETIRED FORMER OFFICIALS

Retirees may access the ILO building on presentation of their Staff Health Insurance Fund (SHIF) insurance card together with a photo identity document such as a carte de legitimation, driving licence, passport etc. Retirees who wish to access the ILO building regularly but do not have an ILO badge may apply for one by email to accreditations@ilo.org.

FAMILY MEMBERS OF RETIRED FORMER OFFICIALS

The ILO does not provide badges to family members. However, family members may access the ILO building on presentation of their Staff Health Insurance Fund (SHIF) insurance card together with a photo identity document such as a carte de legitimation, driving licence, passport etc. Family members who do not have a SHIF card (or who have only the SHIF card for the retired member) but who need to access the ILO building should go to the R2 security desk who will then contact the Control Centre to authorize entry on each visit.


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Seminar of the 14th May 2018 : Comment bien vieillir – Stay younger for longer

Category : News

Documents

Audio recording

Photos album

A seminar on “How to age well – Stay younger for longer” was held on 14 May in the ILO Council Room. Organized by the ILO Alumni Section in collaboration with the former staff of the WHO, United Nations and ITU, it brought together about 200 participants. An inter-organization working group met on several occasions for its preparation. Representatives of the Alumni Section were Kitty Hooton, Liz Sommaro, Abdoulaye Diallo and François Kientzler.

After a presentation on the main normal and pathological consequences of aging on mental health, it was followed by several interventions of member associations of the Geneva Seniors’ Platform, Pro Senectute, Geneva Red Cross, the Geneva institution of maintenance at home (IMAD) and Cité Seniors on the Swiss side and the local gerontological information and coordination center (CLIC) of Pays de Gex on the French side, all followed by questions and comments from the participants.

The focus of the seminar was on living better rather than on the negative aspects of aging; In this connection, the three pillars of aging well were recalled: eating well, training one’s body and maintaining one’s mind. The choice of the speakers was also thought to strengthen the anchoring of our associations in the local environment, thus benefiting all the old ones.

The seminar concluded with the message of hope from Bonnie Fatio, Founder of AgeEsteem, “Aging with passion! “. Bonnie reminded us that, according to a study by Yale University, people who have a positive attitude towards their age live on average seven years and six months longer than others.

We hope that the results of this seminar will have a positive effect on the understanding of the specific needs of elderly pensioners, particularly in the area of ​​prevention for our respective health insurance funds. A detailed account of the work is being prepared thanks to the availability of Holger Postulart who accepted to be the rapporteur, taking notes and going to use the documents made available by the speakers and interpreters. All the people who intervened in this Seminar did it voluntarily and we thank them for it.

The working documents will be put on our website and accessible to all public as well as the report thereafter.

This seminar was the result of a sustained collaboration of several months between associations of retirees of Geneva International Organizations working in synergy. The previous seminar – on isolation – went back to October 2014. We believe that such actions are a new demonstration of the usefulness of associations and groups of pensioners, and even if you have already retired for many years, no feel free to join the Alumni Section to give us your contribution and support.


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After-service health insurance: Update

Category : News

329th session of the Ilo governing body, March 2017

To read the document, download the PDF