Thursday, November 8, 2018

Canadian Gildan Activewear launches "anti-union campaign" in Honduras according to global labour federation IndustriALL

Honduran Gildan Workers Protest, 2009

In a statement released yesterday IndustriALL, the global union federation, says that the Honduran supplier for Canadian textile and clothing manufacturer Gildan Activewear Inc. "has launched an anti-union campaign against its workers". 

According to IndustriALL:
In September, 28 workers were fired for being members of the union SITRAGILMAS, part of the Federation of Workers of Honduras (FITH), an affiliate of IndustriALL. The company is refusing to comply with agreements reached with the union, is harassing workers and has made attempts to form a yellow union.
This comes in the wake of actions IndustriALL says were taken by another Gildan supplier in Haiti:
One year ago, Gildan's supplier in Haiti unfairly dismissed union leaders and activists, including 13 members of IndustriALL affiliate GOSTTRA after a strike to demand an increased minimum wage. The fired workers have not been reinstated and have even been placed on a blacklist, meaning they are unable to feed their families and pay their rent.
Calling on the parent company in Canada, IndustriALL is urging Gildan to comply with the recommendations of ILO’s Better Work Programme, which has also requested that Gildan reinstate the workers in Haiti.
Gildan is a member of the Fair Labour Association, which has yet to take action against the company's violations.
You can read the full statement at: Gildan Activewear continues to violate workers' rights in Haiti and Honduras

On its website Gildan touts its allegedly ethical behaviour on a page talking about their Genuine Responsibility™ initiative (the trademark and its placement is theirs.) According to the company their "three overarching priorities" are "Caring for People", "Conserving the Environment" and "Creating Stronger Communities".

In the "Caring for People" section the company states:
Our Code of Conduct and Code of Ethics are the key elements that support our commitment to respecting employees’ rights throughout our operations and global supply chain. We believe that employees have the right to be free from discrimination or harassment, have opportunities to have their voices heard and be part of a supportive network of peers.
Further Reading:

Gildan workers in Haiti, Honduras complain of harassment, pay too meagre to live on

The new American Apparel: claims of 'ethically made' abroad clash with reality


Gildan Activewear Inc. profits from exploitation in Honduras

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