BWI at Labour Forum within FSC

 

A BWI team took part in a Forum for Labour Rights organized by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) in Lima, Peru on July 13th and 14th, 2017. The aim of the forum was two-fold: to discuss the potential for workers’ protection and coverage within the different aspects of the FSC scheme, including the Core Conventions of the International Labour Organization (ILO); and analyse the standard development processes in FSC to fully integrate labour issues. In addition, the forum provided the opportunity to share experiences on the current FSC Dispute Resolution Mechanism pertaining to labour matters.

The forum brought together representatives from the three Chambers that make up the FSC governance system: The Economic, Environmental and Social as well as FSC staff from Europe, the US and Latin America. From the Social Chamber, trade union representatives from Indonesia, Chile and Peru and BWI staff exchanged ideas on all aspects of workers’ rights. Over the course of the two days, participants heard a series of presentations on trade union involvement, and the joint BWI-GS motion on ‘strengthening social standards in the Chain of Custody’ was presented. The motion’s purpose is to achieve consistency between the Chain of Custody and Forest Management Standards when it comes to health and safety and labour issues.

In addition, an ILO representative based in Peru presented on the importance of the Decent Work Agenda and how the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), in particular item 8 on Decent Work, are key channels to achieve labour protection across sectors. A complementary presentation by an ISEAL official highlighted the state of the art in the field of certification schemes highlighting that ‘FSC is doing well but it could do much more’.

Rulita Wijayaningdyah from Kahutindo (Indonesia) closed the event highlighting that the presence of trade unions within the FSC system has been fundamental to achieve a balance of power. BWI supports Rulita’s re-election as a member of the Board of Directors in the current election.