Civil Society Letter to FLO Regarding Representation of Workers in the Fairtrade system
JOIN OUR MAILING LIST
Enter Email
CONTRIBUTE TODAY
FOLLOW US ON
FEATURED CAMPAIGN

 Watch the Video

FacebookTwitterGoogle+EmailShare

June 19, 2012
 

Date: June 19, 2012

From: US Labor Rights Advocates and Fairtrade Stakeholders

TO: All Members and Board Members of Fairtrade International, also known as the Fairtrade Labelling Organization (FLO) 

SUBJECT: Representation of Workers in the Fairtrade system

Dear FLO Members and FLO Board Members,

We are a diverse group of organizations and individuals, which have been following the uptake of the Fairtrade Label in the US and who are also strong advocates of workers’ rights worldwide.  We commend your efforts to revise FLO’s hired labor standards and the overall implementation system that goes with it. 

We are looking forward to seeing the recommendations of the Workers’ Rights Advisory Committee (WRAC) fully and effectively implemented in the field.  While we acknowledge this will take time, we hope that FLO will continue to actively engage with international and national labor unions in this process and endeavour to swiftly, transparently, and effectively address worker grievances as they arise.

We do not believe, however, that the recommendations of the WRAC, or the advances that might be achieved by developing better standards and policies, will have meaning unless the FLO Governance structure is revised to enable workers and their representatives to have an influential and permanent voice within FLO’s governance structures. 

It is essential that workers are represented; such representation should be based around democratic trade union organisations which represent workers, and accompanied by measures to ensure meaningful and active involvement of workers on certified facilities.  We note that in many cases, this will require an investment in capacity building so that workers and their organizations are able to effectively engage in FLO governance discussions.

Before revisions to FLO’s constitution are finalized, we strongly recommend you seek to come to a solution for effective worker representation within that structure that is agreeable with the trade union movement. In order for us to continue engaging FLO, we need some indication that the voices of workers and their representatives will be effectively influential within the FLO governance structure going forward.

We thank you in advance for your consideration.

Sincerely,

  • AFL-CIO
  • Ethix Merch
  • Food Chain Workers Alliance
  • Global Exchange
  • International Brotherhood of Teamsters
  • International Labor Rights Forum – ILRF
  • Milwaukee Clean Clothes Campaign
  • Milwaukee Fair Trade Coalition
  • Organic Consumers Association – OCA
  • United Students for Fair Trade – USFT
  • US Labor Education in the Americas Project – USLEAP
  • Robert J.S. Ross, PH.D., Professor of Sociology, Director, International Studies Stream, Clark University
FacebookTwitterGoogle+EmailShare

Fair Trade for Farmers and Soil

Plowing field with oxen

Small-scale organic farming and regenerative agricultural practices combat our climate crisis and help feed the world. Here are just a few of the ways that fair trade producers and their brand partners are collaborating to grow ethical supply chains through regenerative organic agricultural methods, and producing goods that we can all feel good about. This […]

The Hidden History Made at Sakuma Brothers Farms

Picking blueberries: Copyright David Bacon

History was made on September 12, 2016 with the election of Familias Unidas por la Justicia to be the union representing berry pickers at Sakuma Brothers Farms in Washington state. Three perspectives on what that means for farmworkers, farmers, and our food system. History was made on September 12, 2016 with the election of Familias […]

Food Waste, Hunger and Climate Change

Food Wastage Footprint and Climate Change, Rome FAQ

As a child, you likely heard some variation of the cliché, “Eat all your food; there are starving people in the world.” While hunger remains one of humanity’s greatest challenges, the underlying causes are not as clear as one might think. Written by Ryan Zinn As a child, you likely heard some variation of the […]

Fair Cannabis?

Trimming

For decades, workers have flocked to Northern California and Southern Oregon to work the fall cannabis harvest. Some are migrants on their seasonal tour. Others are driven by an interest in cannabis culture, or by the promise of lucrative pay. While some “trimmers” have had pleasant, safe and profitable experiences, many have not. Written by […]

Sustainable Public Procurement:

Sustainable Public Procurement

An Understated and Effective Way to Grow Fair Trade Sales of fair trade products have grown in leaps and bounds, especially in Europe. While this growth is encouraging, supply from producers in the Global South is well ahead of demand from consumers in the North. How do we close this gap? Here’s a practical guide […]

Trading Down: How Unfair Trade Hurts Farmers

United States farm incomes sharply declined in 2016 for the third year in a row. Prices for wheat and corn are currently at ten-year lows, and in many cases U.S. farmers are paid below the cost of production for what they produce. While these low prices hurt U.S. farmers, when the crops are exported by […]

Grow Ahead: Crowdfunding Climate Resilience

Fair World Project is launching Grow Ahead, an online crowdfunding platform. For the first time, individual consumers can forge an intimate link with front-line farmer groups, directly funding farmer initiatives and supporting the global effort to address climate change on the farm. Industrial agriculture and food production is a major contributor to climate change, and […]

Fair Cities

cities_minnesota

    What will the just economy of the future look like? We asked for your suggestions for cities across North America that are living examples of fair trade values in action. Is yours on the list? MINNEAPOLIS/ST PAUL, Minnesota Minneapolis-St. Paul is a hotbed of fair trade activity. For decades now, local nonprofits like the […]

It’s Time for Wages With Dignity

timeforwage02

by Ryan Johnson Quietly, hidden behind the headlines that feature presidential candidates bemoaning the state of our country and our economy, voters in several states are no longer waiting on politicians. They’re taking matters into their own hands and launching minimum wage ballot initiatives to create the economic change people sorely need. The impetus for […]

The Business Case for Raising the Minimum Wage

businesscase01

by David Bronner At Dr. Bronner’s, the company I run with my family, we believe that we can only prosper in the long run if we contribute to the prosperity of society as a whole. It’s why we strive to compensate all our staff fairly, cap executive compensation at five times the lowest paid position, […]