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Italy - Trade Unions Flags

Last modified: 2003-04-19 by dov gutterman
Keywords: italy |
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Overview

CGIL, CISL and UIL are the three most important Trade Unions of Italy.
There are some different Labour Organizations like:
- COBAS
- SLAI Cobas
- S.in Cobas
- CUB
- RdB
These five different types of Trade Unions are also very important in the italian workers movement. They propose a different strategy to protect the workers and conquer new rights.
There are other very small Trade Unions. They have very small role in italian workers movement:
- UGL
- CISAL
- CIB Unicobas
- Or.S.A.
There are also many other very small Trade Unions.. They have almost no role. They can be confederal (with the categories inside) or only for a work type. They are (but surely exist much others):
Confederal:
- CONFSAL
- CONSALI
- USI
- CNL
Only for a work type:
- AVIA
- COAS
- Gilda degli Insegnanti
Aaron Belotti, 4 and 22 December 2002


ARCI - Associazione Ricreativa Culturale Italiana (Recreational - Cultural Italian Association)


by Aaron Belotti, 23 December 2002

ARCI is a leftist association born in 1898 With the name "SocietÓ operaie di mutuo soccorso" (Workers Mutual Help Society). This is NOT a Trade Union per se. In the last century this association is changed into a recreational-cultural organization. ARCI means Associazione Ricreativa Culturale Italiana (Recreational-Cultural Italian Association), but today is defined as "Associazione di Promozione Culturale" (Cultural Promotion Association). ARCI is always present in workers strikes, demonstrations etc. with people, stands, and many types of help.
Aaron Belotti, 23 December 2002


ASGB - Autonomer Suedtiroler Gewerkschaftsbund (Autonomus Trade Union Confederation of South Tyrol)


by Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002

An ethnical Trade Union of my province. This is a german speeking organization: ASGB (Autonomer Suedtiroler Gewerkschaftsbund) - Autonomus Trade Union Confederation of South Tyrol.
Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002


AVIA - Assistenti di Volo Italiani Associati (Italian Associated Hostess and Stewarts)


by Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002


CGIL - Confederazione Generale Italiana del Lavore (Italian General Confederation of Labor)

See: CGIL - Confederazione Generale Italiana del Lavore


CIB Unicobas - Confederazione Italiana di Base (Italian rank and file confederation)


by Aaron Belotti, 22 December 2002


CISAL - Confederazione Italiana Sindacati Autonomi dei Lavoratori (Italian Confederation of Workers' Autonomus Trade Unions)


by Aaron Belotti, 22 December 2002


CISL - Confederazione Italiana Sindacati Lavoratori (Confederation of Italian Workers' Syndicates)


by Aaron Belotti, 4 December 2002

Today's NY Times reports a demonstration of Italian Unions. Accompanying the article is a photo of a crowd in Rome, brandishing a zebra-striped flag whose significance is unknown to me.
Albert S Kirsch, 29 March 2002

I found a better photograph of the same demonstration in The Economist (20 April, page 47). The detail makes clear that the "zebra-striped" flag is in fact green and white, with a logo providing a red stripe as well; one version seems to have a flower on it.
Albert S Kirsch, 23 April 2002

I found <www.cisl.it> , the site of the Confederazione Italiana Sindacati Lavoratori, which I take to mean "Confederation of Italian Workers' Syndicates."  The home page has the flag shown on it, apparently 13 stripes as follows: V-W-R-W-V-W-V-W-V-W-V-W-V and a white canton extending over the first four stripes, and the letters CISL in red on the canton, the L extending to form the red stripe.  There also seems to be some kind of red device next between the hoist and the C.
Joe McMillan, 23 April 2002

I think the correct translation of italian "sindacato" (or perhaps "sindicato"?) is rather "trade union". The english cognate "syndicate" usually meaning "criminal association".
Anto'nio Martins, 6 May 2002

Actually, the English word syndicate does not primarily mean a criminal association, although that is a secondary meaning.  The primary meaning is a group of people combining for a common purpose.  Probably the most common use in American English is in referring to the groupings of newspapers that share the distribution of certain features such as cartoons, opinion columns, horoscopes, advice columns, and so on.  Since today's the Monday after the Kentucky Derby, it comes to mind that thoroughbreds are also often owned by syndicates.
Many scholars writing in English translate sindacato/sindicato/syndicat and cognate forms with "syndicate" while others, referring to the same organizations, use "union."  Provided that there is no difference in Italian practice between a "sindacato" and a "unione," I would have no quarrel with rendering CISL as Confederation of Italian Labor Unions, "labor" obviously being preferable to "trade" as a translation of "lavori." 
And the CISL website spells the word "sindacati," so I assume that is correct in Italian.  When I typed the original message, it seemed wrong to me, too.
Joe McMillan, 6 May 2002

It's right, according to my Italian dictionary. The word is derived from "syndicus", a Late Latin word (of Greek origin!) meaning some kind of city official. It comes to English from old French. Note also that "syndicalism" is a political movement advocating control of industry by labor unions (syndicates).
Al Kirsch, 6 May 2002

It's from Greek "sundikadzoo" = to judge together, co-judge, hence "sundikaste's" - co-judge; regular readers of Euripides, Platoon, Lysias and Aristoteles may recognize it...
Jarig Bakker, 6 May 2002


CNL - Confederazione Nazionale Lavoratori (Workers National Confederation)


by Aaron Belotti, 23 December 2002

On the flag of CNL the words in the logo "sempre liberi sempre" means "always free always".
Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002


COAS - COordinamento Azione Sindacale (Trade Union Action Co-ordination (for doctors))


by Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002


COBAS - COmitati di BASe  (Rank and file Comittee)


by Aaron Belotti, 6 December 2002

COBAS (COmitati di BASe) - Rank and File Comittee. Here is a photo of the flag in a demonstration.
Aaron Belotti, 6 December 2002


CONFSAL - CONFederazione Sindacati Autonomi Lavoratori (Workers Autonomus Trade Unions Confederation)


by Aaron Belotti, 23 December 2002


CONSALI - CONfederazione Sindacati Autonomi Lavoratori Italiani (Italian Workers Autonomus Trade Union Confederation)


by Aaron Belotti, 23 December 2002


CUB - Confederazione Unitaria di Base (Unitarian Rank and File Confederation)


by Aaron Belotti, 10 December 2002


FLC - Federazione Lavoratori Costruzioni (Building Workers Federation)


by Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002


by Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002

The three categories of Building and Wood workers (for CGIL is FILLEA, for CISL is FILCA and for UIL is FENEAL) have for many years worked together in joint association. FLC means "Federazione Lavoratori Costruzioni" (Building Workers Federation). This is a exemple of cooperation of the three Trade Unions. Now FLC exist only in my province. The reverse of the flag is completly red. Bolzano is the main city of Alto-Adige. This script means that the Organization in provincially. This flag exists also in german language for my Province. LFB means "LandesFoederation Bau-holz" (Building-Wood federation of the Province). Bozen is the name of Bolzano in german. The reverse of the flag is completly red.
Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002


Gilda degli Insegnanti (Teachers Guild)


by Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002


Or.S.A.- ORganizazzione Sindacati Autonomi e di Base (Rank and File' Autonomus Trade Unions Organization)


by Aaron Belotti, 22 December 2002

In Italian language "orsa" is a female bear. That's the reason for the logo that you can see on the flag of Or.S.A.
Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002

The flag shows a bear and the Big Dipper constelation - a double pun, as the acronym "OrSA" can be read as italian "orsa", "she-bear", and the Big Dipper is "Ursa Major", the greater she-bear, in astronomical usage and in many cultures (incl. italian of roman tradition).
Anto'nio Martins, 26 December 2002


RdB - Rappresentanze di Base (Rank and File deputation)


by Aaron Belotti, 6 December 2002

RdB (Rappresentanze di Base) - Rank and File deputation. Here is a photo of the flag in a demonstration.
Aaron Belotti, 6 December 2002


SLAI Cobas - Sindacato Lavoratori Autorganizzati Intercategoriali (Intercategory Autorganizated Workers Trade Union)


by Aaron Belotti, 10 December 2002


S.in Cobas - Sindacato indipendente (Indipendent Trade Union)


by Aaron Belotti, 4 December 2002

Alternative Flag


by Aaron Belotti, 10 December 2002

I've found today an alternative flag of "S.in Cobas". Both flags are appeared on demonstrations. Maybe are booth official flags.
Aaron Belotti, 10 December 2002


UGL -Unione Generale del Lavoro (Labour General Union)


by Aaron Belotti, 22 December 2002


UIL - Unione Italiana dei Lavoratori (Italian Workers Union)


by Aaron Belotti, 2 December 2002

I found a photograph of the demonstration of Italian Unions in The Economist (20 April, page 47). There is a B- flag with a logo on it and a B+ stripe; just right of center in the photo seems to be a W version of the same flag.
Al Kirsch, 23 April 2002

This is the flag of the UIL. UIL means Unione Italiana dei Lavoratori (Italian Workers Union) It is the third Italian trade union (after CGIL and CISL).
Aaron Belotti, 2 December 2002


USI - Unione Sindacale Italiana (Union of Italian Trade Unions)


by Aaron Belotti, 23 December 2002

Clearly (once?) affiliated with the International Worker's Association, the historical anarcho-syndicalist central.
See also: Anarchism.
Anto'nio Martins, 23 December 2002

The flag of USI is clearly based on the anarchic flag. The letters "A.I.T." are the initials of the International Workers Association (in French) of which USI is associated.
Aaron Belotti, 24 December 2002