The Global Unions’ Committee on Workers’ Capital (CWC), the international labour union network for dialogue and action on the responsible investment of workers capital, has released a new report that outlines why and how investors should react in cases where companies infringe on workers’ rights to join a union and bargain collectively. “Shared Prosperity: The Investor Case for Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining” is the start of a long-term engagement plan by CWC participants, including the IUF, that will advance investor stewardship on labour rights recognition by companies.
“Shared Prosperity” outlines investors’ human rights responsibilities and makes the strong business case for respecting fundamental labour rights. The report describes:
- how value is created when workers exercise their labour rights, including improved corporate human rights due diligence, positive contributions to corporate performance in areas such as health and safety, retention, productivity, and diversity, equity, and inclusion
- how when investors uphold labour rights, they also help mitigate systemic risks associated with inequality and weak economic growth
- how investors can develop guidelines to embed labour rights into investment policies and implement investment stewardship practices that uphold the fundamental rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining
IUF General Secretary Sue Longley stated, “Workers’ pension funds are workers’ deferred wages. People worked hard, organized and negotiated for that money, and now we must make sure that workers’ capital is being invested in a way that lifts up our sisters and brothers. This report shows how pension funds can prosper while still respecting workers’ rights.”