Press Releases

For media inquiries please contact Nazly Sobhi Damasio: nazly [at] globallaborjustice.org

Thailand Downgraded in U.S. Trafficking in Persons Report Due to Failure to Address Forced Labor of Migrant Workers

07/02/21

Washington, D.C. - The U.S. Department of State released its 2021 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report on Thursday, downgrading Thailand to Tier 2 Watch List. The report found the Thai government did not demonstrate overall increasing efforts to address trafficking compared to the previous year nor has it effectively addressed the forced labor of migrant workers. Numerous reports and investigations have implicated Thailand in labor abuses and trafficking of migrant workers, particularly in the fishing, seafood and garment sectors.

GLJ-ILRF Stands in Solidarity With New Jersey Workers Who Exposed Forced Labor and are Demanding Transnational Labor Justice Across the BAPS Global Supply Chain

05/12/21

Robbinsville, New Jersey —  Yesterday, caste-oppressed workers in New Jersey came forward to demand changes in the BAPS global supply chain of temple construction which was revealed to rely on forced labor.  

Seafood Working Group Recommends that Taiwan be Downgraded in State Department Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report

04/01/21

The Seafood Working Group (SWG) has submitted its recommendation that Taiwan be downgraded to a Tier 2 Ranking in the U.S. Department of State’s 2021 Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report. The recommendation is based on SWG’s research and analysis that determined Taiwan is yet to meet the minimum standards set forth in the U.S. Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000. The group’s submission also includes steps the Taiwan government can take to end forced labor and human trafficking in its distant water fisheries (DWF).

Seafood Working Group Urges the U.S. to Downgrade Thailand’s Ranking in the 2021 Trafficking Report due to a Deterioration of Worker Rights Stemming from COVID-19 Policies

04/01/21

Thailand should be downgraded to the Tier 2 Watch List ranking in the U.S. Department of State’s 2021 Trafficking in Persons Report, recommends the Seafood Working Group (SWG) – a global labor rights advocacy coalition. This is necessary due to the continuation of violations of internationally recognized labor rights that make migrants particularly vulnerable to human trafficking as well as a deterioration of rights for vulnerable workers stemming from COVID-19 policies.

GLJ-ILRF Joins Cotton Campaign’s Call to End Intimidation of Uzbekistan’s First Independent Labor Union

03/25/21

Global Labor Justice-International Labor Rights Forum (GLJ-ILRF) stands in solidarity with union activists in Uzbekistan organizing the country’s first independent, democratically elected union and joins the Cotton Campaign’s calls on the Uzbek government to end the intimidation of union activists from local officials. Workers from the Indorama cotton plantations founded “Xalq Birligi” (Peoples’ Unity) in response to low wages and deteriorating working conditions in the transnational company, Indorama.

Rights Groups, Unions and Companies Urge EU to Make Labor Rights a Precondition of Resuming Thai Trade Negotiations

10/28/20

(Bangkok, October 28, 2020) – A group of 45 organizations composed of NGOs, trade unions, companies, and multi-stakeholder initiatives sent a letter today to Valdis Dombrovkis, Executive Vice President of the European Commission, urging the European Union to require labor reform in Thailand as a precondition to the resumption of trade negotiations with the Government of Thailand.   

Thai Court Ruling Against Thai Railway Union Leaders Continues Setbacks on Freedom of Association and Health and Safety Protections

10/23/20

The October 21, 2020 conviction of 13 State Railway Union of Thailand (SRUT) leaders by the Central Criminal Court for Corruption and Misconduct Cases in Bangkok continues setbacks on Freedom of Association and health and safety protections in Thailand.  We call on U.S. brands to ensure freedom of association in their supply chains in Thailand. Too many U.S. companies are profiting from the repression of workers’ rights including the chilling of freedom of association, expression, and assembly that cases like this create.  Now more than ever, workers must be free to individually and collectively refuse unsafe work as allowed by the ILO’s International Labor Standards without fear of retaliation and reprisals. 

Global Trade Unions and Labor Rights Organizations Call for an End to the Retaliation Against Union Leaders at World Bank Funded Marriott-Sheraton Grand in Conakry, Guinea

10/13/20

As Global Labor Justice - International Labor Rights Forum (GLJ-ILRF), we call on the World Bank and the International Finance Corporation to act in accordance with their mandates to block union busting and respect freedom of association and collective bargaining where workers have chosen to be represented.  This must include the reinstatement of hotel union General Secretary Amadou Diallo and Deputy General Secretary Alhassane Diallo, who were both terminated on October 7th, 2020 as leaders of the newly elected union, raising awareness around fundamental workplace issues, including health and safety. 

NGOs Applaud US Customs and Border Protection’s Ban on Palm Oil Imports from FGV Holdings Berhad (FGV) But Warn of Potential for Failed Enforcement

Palm oil supplier to major brands including Procter & Gamble, Nestle, Mondelez, and Colgate-Palmolive sanctioned for use of forced labor
09/30/20

Washington, D.C.— On September 30th, US Customs and Border (CBP) announced a ban on palm oil imported from FGV Holdings Berhad (FGV) — one of Malaysia’s largest palm oil companies and a joint venture partner and major palm oil supplier to Procter & Gamble — due to its use of forced labor. 

Human Rights Groups Call on US for Regional Ban on Imports from China Made with Uyghur Forced Labor

08/31/20

 

Groups file petition with Customs and Border Patrol for a regional Withold Release Order on cotton products from the Xinjiang Region 

Today a group of human rights, labor and investor organizations, filed a formal petition with U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP), urging it to issue a regional withhold release order (WRO) on all cotton-made goods linked to the Xinjiang region of China based on evidence of widespread forced labor. Under U.S. law 19 U.S.C. §1307 it is illegal for the United States to allow entry of goods, “produced, or manufactured wholly or in part in any foreign country by convict labor or/and forced labor or/and indentured labor.” 

180+ Orgs Demand Apparel Brands End Complicity in Uyghur Forced Labour

07/23/20

Today, 72 Uyghur rights groups are joined by over 100 civil society organisations and labour unions from around the world in calling on apparel brands and retailers to stop using forced labour in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (“Uyghur Region”), known to local people as East Turkistan, and end their complicity in the Chinese government’s human rights abuses. The groups have issued a call to action seeking brand commitments to cut all ties with suppliers implicated in forced labour and end all sourcing from the Uyghur Region, from cotton to finished garments, within twelve months.

ILRF and Global Labor Justice Are Joining Forces to Defend Worker Rights and Build Worker Power in the Global Economy

07/01/20

Today, I am excited to announce the merger of two allied organizations — the International Labor Rights Forum and Global Labor Justice.  Developed over many months with the strong support of our allies, board, and staff, our new partnership is coming together at a critical time. As quite literally every person in the world faces a common threat in the form of a global pandemic, workers are simultaneously more isolated and connected than ever before.  At a time when state and corporate responses leave workers around the world in crisis — locked into dangerous working conditions or locked out of jobs with essential wages and benefits — it is clear we must work together to build durable transnational alliances that advance a new strategic vision with labor and human rights in the foreground. Progressive economy efforts can no longer be seen as a parochial, national issue. Transnational movements and strategic campaigns are fundamental to a future that includes decent work, development, and democracy in the U.S. and around the world.  Together we will strengthen the force behind these efforts by providing greater strategic capacity, support, and momentum.

Uzbekistan: Fair Recruitment, Effective Accountability Needed to End Forced Labor as Independent Labor Monitors Harassed, Arbitrarily Detained

06/23/20

June 23, 2020 (Washington, D.C. / Berlin) – A new report released today by Uzbek Forum for Human Rights (formerly Uzbek-German Forum / UGF) on the 2019 cotton harvest in Uzbekistan documents both meaningful progress toward ending forced labor and the persistence of government-organized forced labor, said the Cotton Campaign.

ไอแอลอาร์เอฟ ร้องสิทธิรวมตัวของแรงงานข้ามชาติ ยุติปัญหาใช้แรงงานบังคับในอุตฯอาหารทะเลไทย

05/01/20

ในวันแรงงานสากล  สภาสิทธิแรงงานนานาชาติ ไอแอลอาร์เอฟ (International Labor Rights Forum, ILRF) เรียกร้องให้ รัฐบาลไทย บริษัทอาหารทะเลต่าง ๆ และผู้ซื้อในระดับโลก รับรองสิทธิที่จะมีเสรีภาพในการรวมตัวและการร่วมเจรจาต่อรองของแรงงานข้ามชาติ เพื่อยุติปัญหาการใช้

Remembering the Rana Plaza Workers by Continuing the Fight for Workers’ Rights During the Pandemic

04/24/20

Seven years ago today at least 1,134 workers died in the garment industry’s deadliest factory incident in history. Today, we remember the workers who died in the Rana Plaza collapse, sending our thoughts to those affected by this tragedy. While we commemorate this crisis, workers’ lives are again at risk.

The Covid-19 pandemic crisis sweeping through the garment industry and across the world is undermining the ongoing worker struggles for social protection, living wages, freedom to organise, and safe factories in Bangladesh.

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