IOM, H&M to work for protection of migrant workers

15 Dec '19
2 min read
IOM Finland Chief of Mission Simo Kohonen & H&M Group Head of Sustainability Anna Gedda sign MoU. Pic: IOM
IOM Finland Chief of Mission Simo Kohonen & H&M Group Head of Sustainability Anna Gedda sign MoU. Pic: IOM

The International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and H&M Group have joined hands to promote cooperation and mutual assistance for ethical recruitment and protection of migrant workers in global supply chains. The two have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in this connection. Migrant workers often face unethical recruitment practices.

The MOU was signed by the head of IOM’s office in Finland Simo Kohonen and H&M Group’s head of Sustainability Anna Gedda. IOM is the leading inter-governmental organisation in the field of migration and combats all forms of exploitation and abuse of migrant workers, while H&M Group is a public company that operates retail stores in more than 70 countries and partners with suppliers in over 30 countries.

Unethical recruitment practices and gaps in the governance of labour migration are leading risks that face migrant workers in the global economy. Fee-charging to workers, fraud during the hiring process, the confiscation of personal documents are all-too-common abuses that migrants encounter during the hiring process.

This MOU will leverage the strengths, expertise and global footprint of IOM and H&M Group to enhance migrant protections and improve the recruitment, employment and livelihood opportunities for migrants, in line with the Sustainable Development Goal 10.

IOM deputy director general Laura Thompson said: “IOM is delighted to enter into this partnership with H&M Group. With this MOU, the company shows its true commitment and leadership in the fashion industry. We look forward to bringing our mutual strengths to tackle the complex challenges facing migrant workers in supply chains.”

H&M’s Anna Gedda said: “The partnership with IOM will strengthen our work to ensure fair working conditions for migrant workers in our supply chain. By joining forces, we can more efficiently address the systemic challenges migrant workers face. We see a need to collectively advocate for improved legislation and cross-border regulations at the same time as continuing the work on the ground, together with our business partners and other brands.”

IOM’s Labour Mobility and Human Development Division focuses on the protection of migrant workers and seeks to enhance the benefits of labour migration for all parties involved. The division operates the International Recruitment Integrity System (IRIS) – a global initiative designed to promote ethical recruitment with the support of governments, civil society, the labour movement, private sector and ethical recruiters.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (SV)

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