Browse by Theme: Private Sector

At the International Labour Conference (ILC) taking place now (10-21 June 2019), governments, employers and unions are negotiating global legislation on ending violence and harassment in the world of work. A global Convention is vitally important if we want safe and respectful workplaces for everyone because sexual harassment prevention starts with strong leadership and this legislation represents a clear global direction.

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Today the 108th session of the annual International Labour Conference kicks off in Geneva. As momentum builds for a strong and inclusive ILO Convention to end violence and harassment in the world of work, we are pleased to note growing support from the business community as well. We particularly welcome support from three prominent business organisations Business Fights Poverty, The B Team and BSR, who join our corporate partners Avon, Diageo, Marks & Spencer and Unilever in endorsing CARE’s statement of support originally released on International Women’s Day in March this year.

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This International Women’s Day, CARE International and our corporate partners Avon, Diageo, M&S and Unilever are commited to calling for a strong and progressive ILO Convention to end violence and harassment in the world of work. This letter is co-signed by Amy Greene (Avon), Mairead Nayager (Diageo), Fiona Sadler (M&S) and Laurie Lee (CARE International UK).

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The CEO Agenda 2019 was launched at DAVOS by a number of leading fashion brands, with support from Global Fashion Agenda. It’s good to see major brands trying to tackle the ethical and environmental challenges facing the sector – and society more broadly – but the experience of CARE and our partners in civil society and the trade union movement demonstrates a number of important gaps in this Agenda and limitations to what it can achieve in its current form.

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In a politically volatile environment, CARE is working to implement Community Development Forums (CDF) in tea estates in Sri Lanka. The CDFs are delivered in partnership with the tea workers, estate management and trade union representatives and aim to break-down barriers to show how tea communities can collaborate to achieve social and business benefits. In December 2018 I travelled to Bandarawella to understand more about how CARE’s partnership with the tea company, Twinings is supporting the establishment of CDFs to deliver transformational change.

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Violence and harassment in the workplace - whether in Westminster, Hollywood or McDonalds - continues to make headlines. Its impact on workers and business is increasingly becoming apparent. CARE research in the Cambodian garment sector revealed that there is an estimated 89M$ cost to the economy per year from absenteeism and lost productivity. Legislative changes are also afoot – with proposed changes in the UK and a new global convention due to be agreed in 2019. What then, can companies that want to take the issue seriously do to prepare and improve?

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The narrative coming out of the European Union is that the private sector can provide the ‘solution’ to Europe’s concerns about migration. Is this about a more equitable partnership with African countries, or is it just self-interest and buying into populist fears?

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