24 December 2013
The International Trade Union Confederation, politicians and NGOs have urged western institutions involved in major projects in Abu Dhabi, including the British Museum and New York University (NYU), to take active steps to address the workers’ welfare and press the United Arab Emirates government to improve their conditions.
An Observer investigation found that with respect to thousands workers in building projects, including a new Louvre, the world’s largest Guggenheim and a NYU Campus, minimum labour standards are not respected, there are systematic complaints about poor accommodation and sanitation, salaries and medical services are withheld, and that both experts and the migrants themselves report excessive police force and situations of forced labour.
Sharan Burrow, general secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, warned the international institutions involved in the projects that they shared responsibility for the workers’ welfare and said that ‘International institutions need to be aware that if they associate their name with developments they must insist on full respect for ILO standards.’
Gulf Labor, a coalition of international artists which is mounting a year-long protest against the mistreatment and exploitation of migrant workers on Saadiyat, said the findings should shame the western institutions involved.
Source: The Guardian | Conditions for Abu Dhabi's migrant workers 'shame the west'
31 October 2013
Yossi Dahan, Hanna Lerner and Faina Milman Sivan have published an article entitled ‘Shared Responsibility and the International Labour Organization’ in the latest issue of the Michigan Journal of International Law, vol. 34(4).
Source: International Law Reporter | New Issue: Michigan Journal of International Law
9 October 2013
Guy Ryder, the Director-General of the International Labour Organization said at the opening ceremony of the Third Global Conference on Child Labour in Brasilia that ‘we will not meet the 2016 target (of eradicating child labour) and that is a collective policy failure.’ He called on the international community to not move its attention away from the struggle to end the scourge, adding ‘the call from Brasilia must be for a renewed, collective effort.’
In spite of a drop in the number of child labourers since 2010, Mr. Ryder warned that globally, the number of child labourers is still very large. He said that progress is not happening fast enough, and noted that child labour is not only a problem of poor or developing economies, but it affects all states.
Source: International Labour Organization | ILO Director-General calls on countries to boost efforts to fight child labour
8 September 2013
The International Labour Organization has published the paper ‘Protecting the rights of migrant workers: A shared responsibility’. The paper deals with migrant rights using a life cycle approach in the context of temporary migration programmes, and stresses that protection of migrant workers is a shared responsibility between source and destination countries. Actions taken from only one side of the migration process will not prove adequate to ensure protection of migrant workers, and to promote mutual benefits of migration to development. The ILO hopes the paper will serve as a useful tool for governments, employers’ and workers’ organisations and all other stakeholders who are keen to improve protection of their workers abroad, as well as migrant workers in their countries.
Source: ILO | Publications | Protecting the rights of migrant workers: A shared responsibility (2009)