Assessing the Effectiveness of Transnational Public and Private Policy Initiatives
Leuven Global Governance series
Edited by Axel Marx, Jan Wouters, Glenn Rayp and Laura Beke
Chapter 2: The protection of international labour rights: a longitudinal analysis of the protection of the rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining over 30 years in 73 countries
Since its creation in 1919, The International Labour Organization (ILO) has introduced a system of international labour standards aimed at ‘promoting opportunities for women and men to obtain decent and productive work, in conditions of freedom, equity, security and dignity’. During this long path, many standards related to labour rights have been developed. The ILO’s Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work (1998) covers the core rights and standards laid down in four principles and eight conventions. These principles are: (1) freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining; (2) elimination of all forms of forced or compulsory labour; (3) effective abolition of child labour; and (4) elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation. The importance of these rights was reiterated in the 2004 report by the World Commission on the Social Dimension of Globalization (WCSDG), A Fair Globalization: Creating Opportunities For All, which stated ‘There is wide international agreement on the essentials which we must all urgently strive for . . . a vibrant civil society, empowered by freedom of association’ (p. xii).
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