Ethical Trade and Fair Trade

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Many transnational companies contract out production to smaller companies; some of which subcontract production of component parts, often to the world’s poorest countries where labour is cheap. The resulting supply chains stretch around the world. Workers at the bottom of these chains work under the worst conditions and get the lowest pay; yet many are contributing to the profits of some of the richest companies in the world.

The TUC campaigns for all workers to get a fair deal. We work with a range of NGOs involved in this area including War on Want, Banana Link, Cafod, Oxfam, Labour Behind the Label, Tourism Concern and the Trade Justice Movement. We are also active in the Ethical Trading Initiative, which puts pressure on companies to observe international labour standards, in particular the fight to organise and bargain collectively.

The National Garment Workers' Federation (NGWF) of Bangladesh is a partner union, an affiliate of IndustriALL, and one of the most progressive unions in the Bangladesh textile industry. TUC Aid has been funding training programmes for women members and we have had the General Secretary, Amirul Haque Amin, to speak...
24 April 2016
The TUC welcomes the announcement today (Monday) that the Rana Plaza Donors’ Trust Fund has finally met its target of $30 million. The announcement means that full compensation can be paid to the victims of the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory in 2013, which killed almost 1200 workers.
08 June 2015
Congress welcomes the TUC’s engagement with the Ethical Trading Initiative, and supports the principle that consumers, companies, and organisations should consider the position of workers in the supply chain of goods and services before making purchasing decisions. The TUC’s commitment to ethical supply was demonstrated by the highly effective Playfair...
23 September 2014
TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady has written urgently to the Prime Minister of Cambodia urging him to ensure that a peaceful protest planned for Phnom Penh tomorrow (Saturday) is allowed to proceed, allowing Cambodia's textile trade unionists - mostly women - to express their concerns about wage levels on International...
07 March 2014
As a global campaign launches to persuade corporates sourcing from Bangladesh to compensate the Rana Plaza factory disaster survivors and victims' families, TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady has written to the Chairman of Benetton asking the company to make an appropriate donation to the Rana Plaza Arrangement fund, managed by...
24 February 2014
TUC Aid has joined hands with BananaLink in an initiative to support collective bargaining in the banana sector in Guatemala.
24 July 2013
Over 30 major retailers have signed a significant new union-backed safety accord for Bangladeshi textile workers. However Debenhams and GAP are still holding back from signing. Please help us ask them to change their mind.
20 May 2013
As the death toll in the Rana Plaza textile factory collapse in Dhaka, Bangladesh two weeks ago tops 900, the TUC has today (Friday) published figures which suggest that the reason costs are cut and wages are low in the Bangladesh textile industry has nothing to do with cash-strapped consumers...
10 May 2013
The recently adopted UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights represent a strong international consensus on how to tackle the global rise in business-related human rights abuses. To help bring them to life, the TUC has developed a set of recommendations for the UK government and other actors under...
24 October 2012
To mark the World Day for Decent Work, the TUC is releasing ‘A decent job?': a report assessing the Department for International Development's (DFID) efforts to secure decent jobs for the world's poor. DFID scores just 25 out of 56 points based on criteria developed from the International Labour Organisation's...
07 October 2012