Brussels, 16 January 2008: The ITUC released a new report today showing that all core labour standards, even if ratified, are violated massively and flagrantly in Pakistan. This report coincides with the country’s trade policy review at the WTO on 16 and 18 January and highlights important shortcomings in the application and enforcement of core labour standards in the country.
The report shows that the rights enshrined in both conventions protecting trade union rights are not respected. The right of freedom of association is violated systematically and there is insufficient protection against anti-union discrimination. The right to strike cannot be exercised and workers in the country’s three export processing zones do not enjoy the right to form a trade union, bargain collectively or strike.
Hazardous forms of child labour include street vending, surgical instrument manufacturing, deep sea fishing, leather manufacturing, brick making, production of soccer balls, and carpet weaving. The report denounces the fact while Pakistan has ratified both conventions combating forced labour, this practice, including by children, is widespread in the country. Bonded labour is a major issue despite legislation that should outlawed the practice. The report equally recalls that Pakistan is a source, transit and destination country for trafficked people and that currently, women and children are those most vulnerable to such practices.
Women suffer from discrimination in the workplace. While harassment is a serious problem, there is no law in force to combat it yet.
The report ends with a summary of recommendations and conclusions addressed to the government of Pakistan in an attempt to redress its non compliance with the ILO core labour standards.
To read the full report: please click here
The ITUC represents 168 million workers in 156 countries and territories and has 311 national affiliates.For more information, please contact the ITUC Press Department on: +32 2 224 0204 or +32 476 621 018