Human Rights

How to Safeguard Foreign Workers

Textilindustrie in China
Textile workers in Huaibei, Anhui province, China. Photo: DPA
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    More than half of Germans say they are willing to spend more money on products from firms that are committed to society and the environment.

  • Facts


    • Tchibo is the first German retailer to sign a framework contract with the global trade union federation IndustriALL to improve transparency on workers’ rights abroad.
    • After a deadly factory collapse in 2013, many textile retailers agreed to the “Bangladesh Accord,” for improving building safety and fire protection in factories abroad.
    • But many companies still release little information on working conditions, something a new draft law for corporate responsibility could change.
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The chief executive of Tchibo has a clear goal for workers who produce goods for the German retailer.

“We want to achieve wages that guarantee a secure existence for all textile industry workers in producing countries,” Markus Conrad said.

And he’s now taken an important step toward that goal. Tchibo is the first German merchandising company to sign a framework contract with the global trade union federation IndustriALL. The two parties want to improve working conditions, including the right to organize unions in producing countries.

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