New safeguards from the World Bank will help borrower countries uphold fundamental worker rights, decent employment and safe worksites. Dialogue and cooperation with trade unions will ensure the realisation of fair treatment and quality jobs.
The safeguards will apply to new projects coming into the pipeline from the end of 2018. Alongside updated environmental and social standards, the Bank has issued guidance notes for borrowers with information on how to implement the safeguards in practice.
The guidance note instructs borrowers and project contractors to not use disguised employment relationships to deny workers their rights. Detailed steps are provided to prevent the abuse of migrant workers, child labour and forced labour and worksite hazards.
The safeguard promotes consultation with trade unions by governments and World Bank staff throughout the project cycle.
“The BWI and its affiliated trade unions have worked long and hard to persuade the Bank to adopt comprehensive labour standards in their lending. We look forward to working with the Bank, borrower governments and contractors to ensure that the safeguards become a reality” said Ambet Yuson, BWI General Secretary.
The BWI World Board held a panel discussion and seminar with representatives from the World Bank in June, in preparation for the introduction of the Safeguards. The BWI will be preparing Trade Union Guidance at the end of this year.