Guidelines on Improvement of Working Environment for Migrant Workers in Supply Chains
Business & Human Rights Lawyers Network, Lawyers Network for Foreign Workers, and Lawyers' Network for Foreign Technical Interns have published "Guidelines on Improvement of Working Environment for Migrant Workers in Supply Chains (Supply Chains Migrant Workers Guidelines)".
Non-skilled migrant workers, such as technical intern trainees are placed in vulnerable situations in Japan. They are suffering from serious damages through the COVID-19 crisis. The U.S. State Department Human Trafficking Report downgraded Japan to Tier 2, in the 2020 edition, due to the lack of enforcement of Technical Intern Training Act.
Under this circumstance, the failure to improve working environment of migrant workers could lead to serious results, which are migrant workers’ human rights violations. It may also pose business risks that impede the development of the Japanese industry as a whole.
The improvement of migrant workers working environment in supply chains, is in line with corporate human rights responsibilities under the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and in line with the principle of "leave no one behind," to work towards the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs, in particular, Goal 8: Promoting Decent Work and Goal 12: Sustainable Production and Consumption).
The draft Guidelines were formulated through collective action through cross-cutting dialogues and collaboration between attorneys supporting companies and attorneys supporting migrant workers. We are also grateful for the comments and advice of many Japanese companies, investors, trade unions, civil society organizations, international organizations, and researchers during the process of drafting the Guidelines. The Guidelines is accredited as "Tokyo 2020 Support Program (Sustainability)" by the The Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games.
We expect many business enterprises and other stakeholders including migrant workers to use and implement the Supply Chains Migrant Workers Guidelines.