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16 Jun 2020

Clean Clothes Campaign

CCC rejoinder re. reports of union busting at Myan Mode, Rui-Ning & Huabo Times factories

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"Union Busting in Myanmar: Myan Mode, Rui-Ning and Huabo Times factories", 16 June 2020

... Despite claims from the brands... their responses thus far do not address the core problem of discrimination against trade unionists. Further... the Huabo Times factory dismissals... presents yet another case of union discrimination in the Myanmar suppliers for Inditex and Bestseller (as well as Primark). In all three cases... full remedy is yet to be provided... [and] management refused to sit at the table with the union to address the... violations and negotiate a resolution...

[T]he Rui-Ning union... [says] the layoff list was presented only hours before the union members were dismissed, which makes “consultation” of the union a mockery... Rui-Ning employees reported working overtime in the past month, and at Huabo Times, within one week of the dismissals, 200 employees from another factory branch were... called in to finish production... evidencing that the dismissals had more to do with union discrimination than necessary downsizing...

Inditex, Bestseller and Mango [are obliged] to engage in meaningful due diligence, which includes engaging with stakeholders. However, none of these brands have directly spoken to the factory union involved despite, for example, Bestseller’s statement that they were willing to discuss the case with the complainant...

We welcome the Myan Mode agreement... however 545 workers are still waiting for justice. At Rui-Ning, recognition of the union [and]... an agreement... on rehiring 323 dismissed workers, is still outstanding. At Huabo Times... there is no [re]solution... Immediate steps required from Inditex, Bestseller and Mango are to ensure that the [factories'] management... negotiate in good faith with trade unions and fully remediate the rights violations. Resulting agreements should be supported by brands’ ongoing orders in the factories. Without this commitment, brands are failing in their due diligence... reducing such statements to nothing more than empty CSR rhetoric... Brands and retailers need to request that all suppliers develop clear policies to ensure that Covid-19 is not used as a cover for union busting...

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