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2 February 2017

New white papers highlight connection between MSEs and human rights

On 31 January the Mega-Sporting Events Platform for Human Rights (MSE Platform) published the ‘Sporting Chance’ White Papers, a series of 11 white papers on the interaction between MSEs and human rights. One of the papers is co-authored by BWI General Secretary Ambet Yuson, that looks at the role of trade unions in mitigating human trafficking and forced labour risks, as well as case studies that demonstrate the critical importance of global partnerships and solidarity in mitigating the human and social costs of mega sports events.

‘The BWI is committed to campaigning for workers’ rights in all mega-sports events and to using its resources, including the lessons of previous campaigns, to ensure that games are always fair,’ writes Yuson. ‘The BWI is also committed to finding ways to protect workers continuously and this is where BWI is making further articulations and actions – that the legacy of any World Cup or Olympics for the working people is decent work before, during and after the event.’

For over a decade, BWI affiliates have been at the forefront of organising workers in Mega Sports Events and building campaigns that strengthen union power in host countries’ construction industries. Yuson’s case studies focus particularly on the examples of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa and the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, as part of BWI's 'Fair Games, Fair Play' Campaign for Decent Work in mega sports events.

The MSE Platform is a mult-stakeholder coalition of international and intergovernmental organisations, governments, sports governing bodies, athletes, unions, sponsors, broadcasters and civil society groups, including the BWI. Its mission is to ensure all actors involved in staging an event fully embrace and operationalize human rights duties and responsibilities throughout the MSE lifecycle. These white papers are a first step towards mission, and the MSE Platform website will be regularly updated to highlight progress on the connections between MSEs and human rights.

White Paper on Human Rights Risk Mitigation in the Sports Context


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