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8 November 2019
Germany: companies showing little concern for human rights
The School of Management and Law at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW) and the Business and Human Rights Resource Centre, a British NGO, have probed the practices and actions of 20 large German companies in terms of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and respect of human rights. The results...
22 October 2019
The European Trade Union confederation (ETUC) and the central US AFL-CIO trade union criticize the double standards of European corporates operating within the Southern States of the US
In a joint statement (here) on 21 October, the ETUC and the AFL-CIO denounced the ‘double standards’ of European corporates that do not uphold freedom of association and overall workers’ rights for their employees working in the American south. The basis for the statement is an AFL-CIO report (here) that affirms multinationals ‘which boast top quality social dialogue in Western...
11 October 2019
Amazon sets out its ‘positions’ on a range of social and societal topics
Faced with ever more questions about its practices, especially from its own employees, as the Amazon Employees for Climate Justice group demonstrated, the tech giant decided on 10 October to publish a statement “to provide customers, investors, policymakers, employees, and others our views on certain issues”, underlining in the introduction that “there is much room for healthy debate and differing opinions”. Amazon, which employs 630,000 people across the globe, has taken a stance on various issues –...
6 September 2019
Great Britain : SME punishes staff for bringing single-use plastic into the office in bid to reduce environmental impact
This unprecedented case was initially flagged by the HR-focused press in the UK. Intelligent Hand Dryers, based in Sheffield, in northern England, has attracted attention for having banned its dozen or so employees from bringing single-use plastic into the office. Whether it’s a coffee cup, plastic bottle or a sandwich pack, employees that bring in any single-use items containing plastic will get a warning from the company’s management. After three warnings, repeat offenders will be fired. The measure was...
4 September 2019
Australia: companies are encouraging staff to participate in the Global Climate Strike
Some forty companies across the tech, health, and finance sectors have joined the ‘Not Business as Usual’ alliance in a bid to voice their support for the global climate strike. In concrete terms the business leaders are encouraging their staff to participate in the global climate strike set for 20 September 2019 and they are also encouraging other Australian companies to join them because, “Businesses and individuals must also play their part and this responsibility is even more urgent when governments...
30 August 2019
CSR : pilot programme launched to combat gender violence at sub-contractor of big clothing brands in Lesotho
Three trade unions – the IDUL, UNITE and NACTWU – and two women’s rights organisations – FIDA and WLSA – based in Lesotho have joined forces with the Worker Rights Consortium (WRC), the US independent labour rights organisation, to reach a series of agreements with the brands Levi Strauss, The Children’s Place and Kontoor Brands, as well as their international clothing supplier Nien Hsing Textile, based in Taiwan. The agreements cover a comprehensive pilot programme intended to prevent gender-based...
12 July 2019
Great Britain: employers brace themselves for the Global Climate Strike
With the Global Climate Strike, founded following the movement propelled by the emblematic Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg, having called for a global strike to protect the planet on 20 September, some employers are taking the lead on the matter, the Financial Times revealed in recent days. The British newspaper asked major employers what they plan to do when the day of the strike comes around. Patagonia, the US clothing brand, said that it always encourages its employees to campaign for the environment and even...
25 April 2019
H&M becoming even more transparent as regards its garment suppliers
In a press statement from 23 April 2019, Swedish clothing company H&M announced that for each of its garments it would be sharing details such as production country, supplier names, factory names and addresses, and the number of workers in the factories, and it emphasized the fact that ‘By sharing extended details on where our garments are made we make it easier for customers to make more informed choices when shopping.’
29 January 2019
Brazil : Danone and Nestlé both guilty of using forced labor to traffic yoghurt
Brazil’s Employment Ministry has fined both agri-food giants in an employment case that was ‘analogous to modern slavery.’ The Intercept Brasil website, in cooperation with the Reporter Brasil platform reported on this case on 28 January 2019. Prosecutors have identified 28 different street vendors of dairy products operating within a credit-based reselling system and in which those working go regularly unpaid. Transported into the poorest areas of the country these workers live together in unfit housing...
10 October 2018
CSR: using blockchain technology to combat forced labor
Blockchain technology enables several sectors to access a single register that is decentralized, transparent, and by its construction, really tough to hack. In both the US and Europe, companies, NGOs, and public authorities are starting to conceive of ways to apply blockchain technology in the corporate CSR domain. A pilot project led by soft drinks producer Coca-Cola, the US State Department, and Blockchain experts (Blockchain Trust Accelerator, Bitfury Group et Emercoin) is seeking to deploy blockchain...