ILO International Labour Conference 2016: 30 May - 10 June

The 105th session of the ILO's International Labour Conference is taking place in Geneva, 30 May - 10 June.

The conference guide, agenda and daily bulletin are available on the ILO's website.

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Article
7 June 2016

International Labor Conference: How to fill governance gaps in global supply chains?

Author: Sarah Labowitz and Auret van Heerden, NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights

"The independent republic of the supply chain and the International Labor Conference 2016," 3 Jun 2016

Global supply chains and their effect on people in developed and developing countries are a very hot topic this election cycle. This month, the International Labor Organization (ILO) is holding its three-week International Labor Conference, where supply chains will take center stage. Here are the three big questions we’re watching out for as the meeting unfolds through June 10…Do global supply chains require new rules? Is there a governance gap?... Who’s in charge in the supply chain?...Do we need new legal obligations?...

 

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Article
3 June 2016

Global supply Chains: Time for a convention on decent work

Author: Judy Gearhart, Huffington Post

Over the next two weeks in Geneva, the International Labour Organization (ILO) will dedicate part of its annual conference to an important discussion about how to promote decent working conditions in global supply chains...The ILO debate should start with a clear understanding of what hasn’t worked. Put simply, decades of voluntary corporate social responsibility initiatives have failed to deliver living wages, safe factories, or effective protections for workers’ right to organize and bargain collectively. In the last ten years alone, more than 1,800 workers have died and thousands more have been injured as a result of catastrophic fires and factory collapses that all took place in facilities labeled “safe” by private social audits performed for major multinational apparel brands. The current regime of voluntary and confidential supply chain monitoring should be replaced with initiatives, like the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety, where workers and their unions have a direct role in managing, implementing, and enforcing the relevant standards. Additionally, the Accord’s transparent inspection reports combined with buyers’ time-bound commitments to ensure safety reforms make it possible to hold brands legally accountable.

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Article
1 June 2016

BTS explainer: what is the International Labour Conference?

Author: Beyond Trafficking and Slavery on openDemocracy

This will be the 105th session of the International Labour Conference, but how many people know what it is and why it’s important?

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Article
31 May 2016

Global supply chains: what does labour want?

Author: Sharan Burrow, General Secretary, ITUC, in Open Democracy

With up to 94% of the workforce on whom our largest MNE's depend effectively ‘hidden’, there are serious global governance gaps concerning GSCs. While goods and services are produced by workers in multiple countries, most laws and international conventions stop at the borders of each individual country. Today, voluntary guidelines such as the OECD’s Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises, which incorporates the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights, and the ILO’s long-outdated MNE Declaration are among the few global ‘regulations’ of GSCs; but neither are effective in ensuring that companies respect workers’ rights across supply chains....A major problem for workers, even in places where there is substantive country legislation, is the lack of an adequate remedy for when their rights are inevitably violated. Local supplying companies are unlikely to face accountability because administrative or judicial processes are too slow, weak or corrupt. At the same time, lead firms are usually immune from any legal accountability, since there is no cause of action or jurisdiction over them in either the host country or the home country.

 

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Article
31 May 2016

ILO Conference: Clean Clothes Campaign calls for an institutional framework for remedy & prevention

Author: Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC)

Clean Clothes Campaign...calls upon the ILC to concretely discuss and initiate means to replicate and implement initiatives such as the Bangladesh Accord through:

  • the establishment of an institutional framework that enables cross-border negotiations and develop effective remedy and prevention programs without waiting for a scandal that triggers them, and with the ability to scale up,
  • and the establishment of an enforcement framework that can ensure those programs will be legally binding and therefore can be implemented and sustained.

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Report
31 May 2016

Precarious Work in the GAP Global Value Chain

Author: Asia Floor Wage

Shedding light on the gaps in implementaion of Gap commitments, violaions of internaional labour standards and challenges Gap may face in upholding commitments to decent work, this report contributes new research collected through interviews with 150 workers in India and Indonesia engaged in Gap supply chains. These recent indings, collected between August and October 2015, are situated in context of both previous studies on Gap supply chains in Cambodia, India and Indonesia and the broader context of the global producion network.

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Report
31 May 2016

Precarious Work in the H&M Global Value Chain

Author: Asia Floor Wage

Shedding light on gaps in implementation of H&M commitments, violations of international labour standards and challenges H&M may face in upholding commitments to decent work, this report contributes new research collected through interviews with 251 workers in Cambodia and India engaged in H&M supply chains. These recent findings, collected between August and October 2015, are situated in context of both previous studies on H&M supply chains in Cambodia and India and the broader context of the global production network.

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Report
31 May 2016

Precarious Work in the Walmart Global Value Chain

Author: Asia Floor Wage

This report presents new research on violations of international labour standards in Walmart garment supplier factories. Information was collected through interviews and focus group discussions including 344 workers engaged in Walmart supply chains in Bangladesh, Cambodia and India; and an in-depth case study, spanning 8 months, of working conditions in an Indonesian Walmart supplier employing 3,800 Indonesian contract workers.

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Article
30 May 2016

Guy Ryder's report to Intl. Labour Conference - "The End to Poverty Initiative: The ILO and the 2030 Agenda"

Author: Guy Ryder, Director General, ILO

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Report
30 May 2016

HRW: “Human Rights in Supply Chains: A Call for a Binding Global Standard on Due Diligence"

Author: Human Rights Watch

"Make Rules on Rights Binding for Businesses - ILO Should Create Treaty to Protect Workers"

Delegates at the 2016 International Labour Conference should initiate a process to develop a binding, international convention to protect human rights in global supply chains, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. Governments, employers, and workers from around the world are meeting in Geneva for the annual labor summit, starting on May 30, 2016, to discuss how to ensure “decent work” in global supply chains.

The 21-page report, “Human Rights in Supply Chains: A Call for a Binding Global Standard on Due Diligence, draws upon two decades of Human Rights Watch research on child labor and other labor rights abuses, environmental damage, and violations of the rights to health, land, food, and water, in the context of global supply chains.

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