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Showing blog posts tagged with Solidarity Center

ILO: Child Labor Declines, Worst Forms Will Remain by 2016

ILO Photo

The number of child laborers has declined by one-third globally, from 246 million in 2000 to 168 million in 2012, according to an International Labor Organization (ILO) report released Monday. Yet the report also shows that despite the reduction, the worst forms of child labor will not be eliminated by 2016, a goal sought by the ILO and its international allies.

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Experts: Bangladesh Accord Is a Game Changer

Solidarity Center photo

In a dramatic demonstration of how deadly the global supply chain really is, Scott Nova, director of the Worker Rights Consortium (WRC), opened a panel on workers' rights in Bangladesh during the recent AFL-CIO Convention with this observation:

Of the four deadliest factory disasters in history, three of those four happened in the last 12 months.

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Stop Honduran Labor Abuses Now

Photo of Amapala, Honduras by Adalberto.H.Vega, Flickr

On July 16, Kyungshin-Lear, a car parts manufacturing company with a factory in Honduras, fired three of nine newly elected union leaders. Within the following days, we have learned from our colleagues at the AFL-CIO Solidarity Center that the remaining six of the nine newly elected union leaders also were fired. Since January 2012, Kyungshin-Lear has fired 26 union leaders, with the company's most recent illegal firing of all nine union leaders in April 2013, and then in July, firing the nine union leaders who had been recently elected to replace the fired leaders from April.

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Unions Face Uncertainty After Flawed Zimbabwe Election

As results continue to be announced in Zimbabwe’s national elections, trade unions and other civil society partners are feeling a sense of dejection, as it appears that not only will Robert Mugabe continue his 33-year rule of the country for another five years, but his party ZANU-PF will secure a two-thirds parliamentary majority.

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Gender Equality: The Unfinished Business of the Labor Movement

Brazilian trade union leaders joined Solidarity Center Executive Director Shawna Bader-Blau (second from left) at the opening plenary. Photo: Matt Hersey

Women at every level are “moving the labor movement in new directions” and “inventing new kinds of worker organizations and new ways of being a trade unionist,” says labor historian Dorothy Sue Cobble.

 
 

Cobble, distinguished professor of history and labor studies at Rutgers University, was among several speakers opening a two-day AFL-CIO Solidarity Center conference this morning, “Women’s Empowerment, Gender Equality and Labor Rights: Transforming the Terrain.” Nearly 100 labor and community activists from 20 countries are gathered here in São Paulo, Brazil, to share strategies for achieving gender equality and worker rights in their unions and their workplaces.

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After Zimbabwe Elections, Union Worker Education Continues

Photo: Macpherson Photographers via the Solidarity Center

As Zimbabwe’s July 31 presidential elections approach, the Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions (ZCTU), one of the country’s only nonpolitical, mass-based movements, plans to actively promote free and fair elections and, equally important, hold lawmakers accountable after elections.

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Honduras: Death Threats Against Union Activist, Radio Host

Photo via the Solidarity Center

For the past 20 years, Martínez, head of communications with the Honduran federation of agro-industrial unions, FESTAGRO, has hosted a daily radio show called "Trade Unionist on Air," which features discussions about labor and human rights, including an opportunity for agricultural workers to call in and ask about abusive workplaces, labor standards and rights violations.

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Dominican Republic: Domestic Workers Wage Long Campaign for Rights

Domestic workers in the Dominican Republic are urging lawmakers to pass the "Decent Work for Domestic Workers" standard. Photo credit: Julio Lantigua

Workers this week are marking the second anniversary of the historic passage of a global standard covering the rights of domestic workers. The International Labor Organization's (ILO's) Decent Work for Domestic Workers Convention (No. 189) covers written employment contracts, protection from harassment, abuse and violence, hours of work, job safety and other workplace safeguards.

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Bangladesh Government Moves to Ease Unionization

Arati Bala Das, 18, who lost her right leg in the Rana Plaza collapse, feeds her sister, Akhi

The Bangladesh Cabinet approved a change to the nation’s labor laws that it says would enable workers to more freely form unions. The proposal, which must be approved by Parliament, would allow workers to join unions without showing the list of union supporters to factory owners to verify their employment—a practice that effectively makes it impossible for unions to gather sufficient support to register with the government because factory owners often penalize or fire workers who support unionization.

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Colombia: Many Women Workers Face Job Discrimination

Afro-desendent women gathered in Medellin, Colombia, in April for the first domestic workers union congress. Photo: IDWN

In Colombia, “even when there’s an improvement in the overall economy, women don’t see any improvement,” says Sohely Rua Catañeda. As a result, many women who are unable to secure formal employment are forced into the informal sector to support themselves and their families, laboring as domestic workers or street vendors. Women in these low-paying jobs have limited or no access to social services and are unable to address workplace harassment or unsafe working conditions.

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