Blog: Forced Labor

Seafood Working Group Tackles Forced Labor and Environmental Abuses in Asia and the Pacific

Today, the Seafood Working Group (SWG) relaunches its research and advocacy coalition with 23 official members and a new Advisory Body . The SWG is a global coalition of human rights, labor and environmental non-governmental organizations working together to develop and advocate for effective government policy and industry action to end the related problems of forced labor and illegal and unsustainable fishing practices in the international seafood trade.

Improving Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Communications with Stakeholders Must Be A Two-Way Channel

 

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) released its report to the Chairman of the Committee on Natural Resources, House of Representatives, last week called “Forced Labor: Better Communication Could Improve Trade Enforcement Efforts Related to Seafood.” The overall recommendation is that CBP improve its communication with stakeholders about what information is needed for enforcement actions to be taken under Section 307 of the Tariff Act.  Yet the GAO remained silent on the need for CBP to be more transparent about their decision process, the enforcement actions they take and status of the petitions filed.

U.S. TIP Report 2019: A missed opportunity for Freedom of Association in Thailand?

The 2019 U.S. Department of State Trafficking in Persons (TIP) Report was released last week. Rightly so, Thailand remained at its previous ranking of Tier 2. This ranking is reserved for countries that do not meet the minimum standards to address human trafficking but are making efforts to do so. Maintaining the Tier 2 status is consistent with the Thai Seafood Working Group’s recommendation, yet the U.S. government missed an opportunity to focus Thai authorities and businesses on the structural changes needed to prevent labor trafficking in the country.

Are Amazon, Walmart, and eBay’s online 'marketplaces' providing a refuge for goods made with forced labor?

Last month, while browsing online, we were surprised to find that we could buy cotton hand towels advertised as “made in Turkmenistan” on the websites of Amazon, Walmart, and eBay.  In May 2018, U.S.

Modern-Day Servitude in U.S. Port Trucking: A Call to Retail Brands

Today, southern California’s port truck drivers and warehouse workers - many of whom are Black and Latinx workers and TPS recipients – begin a three-day strike to send a clear message to their port trucking employers (XPO Logistics and NFI Industries) and the country’s most powerful brands and retailers: put an end to rampant wage theft and the misclassification of port truckers.

Time to Unleash the Power of the U.S National Contact Point

One of the many items in the packed agenda at the UN General Assembly in New York last week was the establishment of more concrete standards for companies seeking to do business sustainably in pursuit of the Sustainable Development Goals. More and more top business leaders are seeking guidance on how to ensure good corporate behavior. But the UN standards are not the only resource to CEOs that want to make environmental and social protection part of their business model.

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