Annual Labor Rights Defenders Awards

Each year, the ILRF Awards ceremony brings together policy leaders, labor activists, and an increasingly diverse group of internationalists who know that human rights and economic justice depend on the ability of workers and their advocates to speak out and defend human rights at work.

ILRF honors trailblazers, both nationally and internationally, for their innovation and visionary leadership in labor rights advocacy, from fighting for safe and just working conditions to demanding corporate accountability. Each honoree is a courageous domestic or international worker rights leader who is a) amplifying the voices of workers, b) standing against worker rights abuses wherever they occur, and c) driving labor or corporate accountability policies to improve workers’ lives. These impressive organizations and individuals are leading labor rights defenders in their own respective community, region, and/or country.


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You can read more about our 2019 awardees here.



+ Playwright Eve Ensler
+ El Sindicato de Trabajadores de la Agroindustria y Similares (STAS) and La Federación de Sindicatos de Trabajadores de la Agroindustria (FESTAGRO)
+ Familias Unidas por la Justicia
+ Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur
+ The International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers
+ Human Rights Defenders in Uzbekistan, including Elena Urlaeva, Dmitry Tihonov, and Uktam Pardaev
+ Senator Sherrod Brown
+ Farm Labor Organizing Committee
+ Tobacco and Allied Workers Union of Malawi
+ Congressman George Miller
+ Communications Workers of America
+ Maquila Worker Organizing Project (CGT, Honduras)
+ Senator Tom Harkin
+ State Enterprises Workers’ Relations Confederation (SERC) and the Migrant Workers Rights Network (MWRN)
+ United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, Warehouse Workers United, Warehouse Workers for Justice, and the National Guestworker Alliance
+ U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis
+ United Steelworkers
+ American Federation of Teachers
+ Bangladesh Center for Worker Solidarity
+ U.S. Representative Jan Schakowsky
+ Francisco Ramirez Cuellar, Colombian Mineworkers’ Union (Sintraminercol)
+ International Brotherhood of Teamsters