Generic Labour Conditions Question 5

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Question

EN: Does this Code of Conduct include the right for workers to form and join trade unions and bargain collectively; and in those situations where these rights are restricted under law, the right to facilitate parallel means of independent and free association and bargaining?
NL: Bevat deze Code of Conduct ook het recht voor werknemers om zich te organiseren in een vakbond en collectief te onderhandelen, en worden er gelijksoortige oplossingen aangereikt wanneer deze rechten worden beperkt door de wet?
DE: Schließt der Verhaltenskodex das Recht ein, dass Arbeitnehmer eine Gewerkschaft gründen oder einer beitreten können und somit gemeinsame Tarifverhandlungen durchführen können? Sollten diese Rechte gesetzlich eingeschränkt sein, schließt der Verhaltenskodex das Recht ein, andere Wege zu einer unabhängigen und freien Vereinigung sowie Tarifverhandlungen zu fördern?

References

The right of all workers to form and join trade unions and bargain collectively is based on ILO Conventions 87 and 98. For the situations where these rights are restricted by law, the code should provide for parallel means of independent and free association and bargaining for all workers, as based on ILO Conventions 135 and 154 and Recommendation 143. Also this question refers to criterion 14 'Employment Rights' and 17 'Human Rights' of the Sustainability Code 1 2 from the German Council of Sustainable Development.

Ranking guidelines

Only reward a ‘Yes’ if the standards are clearly mentioned. Please mention in the remark section where you exactly found the statement.

Note that in countries like China and Bangladesh there are certain legal restrictions on trade unions and collective bargaining, but still alternative measures are possible. For this question we follow the ‘best practices’ philosophy, in this case we can refer to e.g. the Code of Conducts of FWF and ETI for all its members. We only reward a ‘Yes’ if the code meets at least one of the following criteria:
- the CoC clearly requires parallel means for the situation of law restrictions;
- the CoC includes references to at least 4 of the 5 ILO Conventions and Recommendation, ILO Convention 154 MUST be mentioned since this convention specifically refers to the situation when this right is restricted by law;
- none of the brand’s products are made in countries where these legal restrictions are in place as clearly reported and mentioned by the company.

A ‘Yes’ is also applicable when:

  • ... all the brand products are made in ‘low risk’ countries, see the list as defined by Maplecroft (or the brand has published a Fair Wear Foundation or SA 8000 report where these initiatives specifically state the brand produces only in low-risk countries).
  • ... the brand follows the WFTO standards.
  • ... the brand follows the Fair for Life standard for hired labour.
  • ... the entire production is GOTS certified, which means that all products are made according to this standard.
  • ... the brand follows the GOTS labor conditions standards, which means that all products are made according to this standard.

A 'No' is applicable when:

  • ...the brand follows the IVN labor conditions standards, since IVN does not publish its detailed labor conditions standards and does not mention the 'reference to parallel means for the situation of law restrictions' in the summary of its standards.
  • ...all raw materials are IVN certified, since IVN does not publish its detailed labor conditions standards and does not mention the 'reference to parallel means for the situation of law restrictions' in the summary of its standards.

NOTE: When a brand is a member of an acknowledged Multi Stakeholder Initiative, but the brand has also published its own CoC on the website, the brand's CoC is decisive.

NOTE: When a brand uses a CoC of an acknowledged MSI, a link to the homepage of this MSI is good enough to use this CoC.

NOTE: Only encouraging suppliers to facilitate parallel means of independent and free association and bargaining for the personnel is not enough to score a 'Yes'.

Answering guidelines

Yes:

  • This right is mentioned, with reference to parallel means for the situation of law restrictions.
  • In FLA Workplace Code of Conduct: Freedom of association is mentioned, with reference to parallel means for the situation of law restrictions. http://bit.ly/1rozn2z
  • All products are made in [...], which [is a low risk country / are low risk countries] as defined by Maplecroft.

No:

  • Freedom of association is mentioned, but nothing found about situations in which this right is restricted by law.
  • Freedom of association is mentioned, but in the case where the local labor laws restrict these freedoms, the supplier is only encouraged (but has no obligation) to facilitate parallel means of independent and free association and bargaining for the personnel.
  • This right is not mentioned in [Brand]'s supplier Code of Conduct.

?:

  • [Brand] provides a Code of Conduct (CoC), but this is not a supplier CoC.
  • [Brand] states all suppliers should have signed its supplier Code of Conduct (CoC), but [Brand]'s supplier CoC is not published.
  • [Brand] mentions a supplier Code of Conduct (CoC), but no CoC found on website.
  • [Brand] provides a supplier Code of Conduct (CoC), but suppliers are only encouraged to comply with the CoC.
  • See remark for labor conditions policy question 1.


-* You can pick the topic that applies to 'your' brand.

Note: when linking to a downloadable source document, please refer to the page(s) where to find the respective information with: (see link, page [..]).

Optional, but only for ? Answers, feel free to write at the end of a remark: Sustainability information should be easily accessible for consumers to make responsible choices.

Further resources