Dieh briefing paper on living wage draft seminar 18 9 2009
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DIEH Briefing Paper on Living Wage DRAFT Seminar 18.9.2009. Introduction. NGOs. Companies. Business associations. Trade unions. Multi-stakeholder initiative Purpose Promote ethical trade and responsible sourcing Platform for knowledge sharing Resource centre

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Dieh briefing paper on living wage draft seminar 18 9 2009

DIEH Briefing Paper onLivingWageDRAFTSeminar 18.9.2009


Introduction
Introduction

NGOs

Companies

Business associations

Trade unions

  • Multi-stakeholder initiative

  • Purpose

    • Promote ethical trade and responsible

      sourcing

    • Platform for knowledge sharing

    • Resource centre

    • Guidance to members on carrying out their responsibility in practice


Dieh briefing paper draft
DIEH Briefing Paper Draft

  • A theoretical foundation for DIEH position paper and recommendations

  • Should encompass:

    • An updated overview of the issue

    • Practical cases

    • Lessons learned

    • Best practices


DefinitionsLiving wage is commonly understood as a level of compensation that allows workers to meet basic needs including staple food, housing and health care and provides some discretionary income within a standard work week.


Different challenges
Different Challenges

  • Governments: Fear that higher minimum wages have a negative effect on the economy and trade

  • Companies: Fear higher costs and poor competitiveness

  • Suppliers: Fear a rise in costs vs. falling retail prices

  • Trade unions: Mechanisms such as collective bargaining should be in place


Company challenges
Company Challenges

  • How can smaller companies have any influence on the wage level as a small customer with the supplier?

  • How can companies ensure that the suppliers’ increased earnings will be transferred to the workers?

  • How can companies join forces with other buyers at the same facility when they do not know them?

  • What can companies do when their supplier fears raising salaries due to threats from neighbouring factories in a cluster?


How to implement
How to implement?

  • Multi-stakeholder collaboration: unless a company is the main customer, it cannot alone implement a living wage with the supplier (Miller & Williams, 2009)

  • Local input for estimating wage levels

    • Workers, trade unions, NGOs, academics etc.

  • Wage-ladder

  • Step 1: Fair wage?

  • Training of workers to promote collective bargaining

  • Companies should examine their own cost structure to identify how to cover the additional cost


Discussion points
Discussion Points

  • Is the issue covered?

  • Business Cases?

  • Other…


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