Labour

Post-Rana Plaza, Global Investors Pushing for Systemic Change

A coalition of 134 institutional investors are calling for global corporations to institute new transparency policies throughout their supply chains and to step up assistance to survivors and families still suffering a year after a major fire led to the collapse of a garments factory in Bangladesh, despite repeated warnings from workers.

Storm in a Rice Bowl

Rice, a staple of the South Korean diet, is stirring up a bowlful of worry for Seoul. Under a promise to the World Trade Organisation (WTO), the government has to make a tough choice on rice imports by June this year.

Argentina’s Informal Economy Shrinks, But Not Fast Enough

At the age of 22, Franco finally landed his first job, although he is not on any payroll and receives no labour benefits. He is part of Argentina’s informal economy, where one out of three workers are employed – a proportion the government aims to reduce by means of a new law.

Japan Seeks Foreign Workers, Uneasily

Desperate for more workers to support a construction boom, Japan has proposed to expand its controversial foreign trainee programme to permit more unskilled labour from Asia to work in Japanese companies for five years from the current three years.

The Global Trading System Aims to Improve Children’s Lives

Although some people don’t see the connection, the global trading system is aimed at creating some of the essential conditions needed to improve children’s lives and their prospects in the future.

Ending Modern Slavery Starts in the Boardroom

Modern-day slavery can be eradicated from multinational supply chains, but only if global businesses contribute to greater transparency and collaboration, according to new recommendations by Sedex Global and Verite.

CEOs at Big U.S. Companies Paid 331 Times Average Worker

In new data certain to fuel the growing public debate over economic inequality, a survey released Tuesday by the biggest U.S. trade-union federation found that the CEOs of top U.S. corporations were paid 331 times more money than the average U.S. worker in 2013.

Is Puerto Rico Going the Way of Greece and Detroit?

Puerto Rican society has been shaken to its foundations by the announcement in February by Standard & Poor's and Moody's credit rating agencies that they had downgraded the island's creditworthiness to junk status.

Conflict Fuels Child Labour in India

Early in the morning, 14-year-old Sumari Varda puts on her blue school uniform but heads for the village pond to fetch water. “I miss school. I wish I could go back,” she whispers, scared of being heard by her employer.

Brazil’s FIFA World Cup Preparations Claim Lives

The pressure to complete 12 football stadiums in Brazil in time for the FIFA World Cup in June has meant long, exhausting workdays of up to 18 hours, which has increased the risk of accidents and deaths.

Tajikistan’s Government Distances Itself from Labour Migrants

Labour migrants make up Tajikistan’s economic lifeline, but that’s a fact the Central Asian country’s leadership doesn’t seem eager to acknowledge.

World Bank, IMF Urged to Act on New Inequality Focus

Global income inequality threatens economic and social viability, according to a World Bank report released Thursday, reiterating a new but increasingly forceful narrative from both the bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Obama Says Gender Pay Gap Is No Myth, It’s Math

Since his re-election in 2012, President Barack Obama has stepped up his rhetoric around gender equality issues in the United States, but he has yet to get a partisan U.S. Congress to go along with a series of legislative proposals he put forward.

U.S.-Colombia Labour Rights Plan Falls Short

Three years after Colombia agreed to U.S. demands to better protect labour rights and activists, a “Labour Plan of Action” (LPA) drawn up by the two nations is showing mixed results at best, according to U.S. officials and union and rights activists from both countries.

Colombia’s Breadbasket Feels the Pinch of Free Trade

“Things are getting worse and worse,” Enrique Muñoz, a 67-year-old farmer from the municipality of Cajamarca in the central Colombian department of Tolima, once known as the country’s breadbasket, said sadly.

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