Help Us Reject the Uzbekistan Trade Deal ; Supply Unchained Conference Tobacco Union Meetings in Malawi & Abercrombie and Flames plus US Labor Secretary Visits Peru to Discuss ILRF’s Complaint Complaint Lodged on Palm Oil Industry Violations


November 2016 E-News

Help Us Reject the Uzbekistan Trade Deal
Supply Unchained Conference
Tobacco Union Meetings in Malawi
Abercrombie and Flames
US Labor Secretary Visits Peru to Discuss ILRF’s Complaint
Complaint Lodged on Palm Oil Industry Violations


Help Us Reject the Uzbekistan Trade Deal

As the brutal cotton harvest in Uzbekistan comes to a close, the European Parliament is considering whether to adopt a Textile Protocol with Uzbekistan that would reduce tariffs and allow Uzbek cotton produced with forced labor to reach European markets. This deal could lead to an increase in the use of cotton produced by forced labor. We need your help to contact European officials and tell them to reject the damaging Textile Protocol with Uzbekistan until its government proves that it has eliminated the horrific practice of forced labor in the cotton fields.

Honduran melon workers


Supply Unchained Conference

ILRF Executive Director Judy Gearhart and Legal & Policy Analyst Andy Shen hosted a two-day workshop in Bangkok, Thailand, with international partners for the Supply Unchained project. ILRF’s innovative project, Stop Trafficking by Sea, is exploring ways to harness vessel tracking technology to assess and reduce human trafficking risks in the Thai fishing industry. The project is working with human rights, labor and environmental groups to identify indicators of forced labor that would be most relevant and feasible for tracking labor trafficking at sea. The project will also map data sources that could provide reliable information to assess indicators of forced labor.


Tobacco Union Meetings in Malawi

This past month, ILRF Legal & Policy Director Eric Gottwald represented ILRF at a conference in Lilongwe, Malawi, held by trade unions representing workers in tobacco growing and processing. The trip included visits to two tobacco plantations, one owned by Alliance One and the other an independent producer with tenant farmers. Meeting with and listening to these farmers is a crucial step in continuing global pressure on tobacco giants to demand justice for farmworkers in an industry where trafficking and debt bondage is common practice.


Abercrombie and Flames

Last month, we launched our Abercrombie & Flames campaign to urge Abercrombie to uphold the commitments it made to timely remediation of safety hazards under the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety. We were really heartened that A&F took the high road by signing the Accord in 2013, but their ongoing delays on safety undermine that commitment.

Huge thanks to all who took the time to send a letter to A&F CEO Fran Horowtiz. If you haven’t already, head here to add your voice.

Peruvian worker demonstration


US Labor Secretary Visits Peru to Discuss ILRF’s Complaint

US Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez is visiting Peru this week to discuss the labor complaint filed by ILRF along with Peruvian human rights groups. This complaint alleges noncompliance with key provisions in the bilateral US-Peru Free Trade Agreement, particularly the ones protecting freedom of association. In some sectors, workers can be retained indefinitely on extremely short-term contracts, some even as short as two weeks. These short-term contracts make it easy for employers to avoid re-hiring those who may be involved with union organizing. Read more here.

Chinese Walmart workers protest unfair scheduling


Complaint Lodged on Palm Oil Industry Violations

ILRF, along with Rainforest Action Network (RAN) and Indonesian labor rights advocacy organization OPPUK, lodged a formal complaint against palm oil giant Indofood with the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), the industry’s largest certification scheme. The complaint accuses Indofood, a joint venture of PepsiCo and the largest private palm oil plantation company in Indonesia, of systematically violating the fundamental rights of workers on its palm oil plantations. The coalition is urging Indofood to commit to using only responsibly produced palm oil. Read more in our joint report, “The Human Cost of Conflict Palm Oil: Indofood, PepsiCo’s Hidden Link to Worker Exploitation in Indonesia.”

About eslkevin

I am a peace educator who has taken time to teach and work in countries such as the USA, Germany, Japan, Nicaragua, Mexico, the UAE, Kuwait, Oman over the past 4 decades.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s