Optimistic change in Cambodian garment sector resulting from ILO BWP

Cambodian factories receiving the complete bundle of providers by Higher Factories Cambodia (BFC) achieved enhancements in compliance systematically above the trade common, say findings by BFC that pulls on the outcomes from a broad impartial affect evaluation research carried out by Tufts College on behalf of the Higher Work Programme (BWP) between 2015 and 2018.

The research reveals that being a part of Higher Factories Cambodia results in a lower in lengthy hours of labor which might be typical within the attire sector. On the identical time, employees keep or improve their weekly take-home pay, which researchers attribute to elevated compliance with pay rules, together with as minimal wages have been rising within the sector.

It additionally signifies a rise in life satisfaction, which tends to enhance amongst employees, significantly after three years of an employer’s participation within the programme.

The eradication of violence and harassment, together with sexual harassment, within the office can be a vital consider furthering the rise in employee well-being. On common, employees within the trade are younger migrants hailing from then nation’s rural areas, with girls making up about 80 per cent of the employed workforce.

Findings confirmed the often-observed dynamic whereby younger girls with out youngsters usually tend to change into victims of sexual harassment resulting from stereotyping and gendered beliefs that intersect with age and life stage.

Researchers discovered that by the third-year evaluation, employees report that sexual harassment throughout the manufacturing facility ground is much less widespread, an impact they attribute to their manufacturing facility’s participation in Higher Factories Cambodia. Outcomes additionally counsel that organizational tolerance for sexual harassment is decreased whereas being a part of Higher Work.

Nonetheless, solely lower than half of the employees surveyed imagine that an enough reporting system for sexual harassment exists of their manufacturing facility, suggesting that grievance procedures and anti-harassment coaching nonetheless have important room for enchancment.

Via two newly revealed briefs—‘Harnessing Compliance to Enhance Effectively-being and Productiveness: The Impression of Higher Factories Cambodia’ and ‘Gender and Care Duties: Analyzing the variations for garment employees in Higher Factories Cambodia’—the programme is about to spotlight survey outcomes gathered from employees and managers about subjects starting from working situations to manufacturing facility operations and their life at residence.

The Higher Work Programme is a partnership between the Worldwide Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Worldwide Finance Company (IFC). It was launched in August 2006 to enhance labour requirements and competitiveness in world provide chains.

The info covers 57 Cambodian attire factories, or 12 per cent of the programme’s affiliated corporations, in line with a press launch from the programme.

All manufacturing vegetation have been new entrants inside their first three years of enrolling in Higher Factories Cambodia, and that’s a key issue within the research: they measure the efficacy of the programme within the first years of implementation.

The Cambodia programme, which was established in 2001, at present counts 550 factories that make use of over half of greater than one million employees employed within the native garment sector.

The trade, which has been severely hit by the rippling results of the continuing COVID-19 pandemic and lately underwent a partial withdrawal of its tariff-free exports to the EU market, nonetheless represents over half of the overall export worth of the nation.

“This can be a robust indication that dedication to bettering working situations, by means of an built-in strategy of larger compliance enforcement, coaching, and advisory providers, are key determinants of each enterprise success and the well-being of employees,” says Sara Park, Higher Factories Cambodia programme supervisor.

“The primary channel by which Higher Factories Cambodia reduces sexual harassment is thru enhancements in energy relationships decided by misaligned pay incentive buildings between employees and supervisors,” Park says.

Delving additional into gender variations throughout the manufacturing facility ground, the research identifies discriminatory patterns not solely between ladies and men, but additionally between completely different teams of ladies, reminiscent of girls with and with out youngsters, and girls with and with out infants.

About 15 per cent of the employees interviewed reported being handled otherwise due to their gender by a supervisor or supervisor. However discrimination additional will increase within the case of lower-educated girls with youngsters, in line with the research. These girls are much less prone to have an employment contract, obtain coaching on employee rights and new expertise, and fewer prone to be promoted.

Feminine and male employees’ survey responses stress a extensively shared concern about low wages, recognized as the principle trigger of additional working. However whereas girls battle in combining additional time calls for within the manufacturing facility with family pressures, males are extra possible than girls to report that they can’t refuse additional time amid fears of being terminated.

Lastly, the implementation of occupational security and well being requirements (OSH) stays a significant problem throughout the native garment trade, a scenario additionally mirrored in different garment-producing international locations all over the world. Males are likely to report OSH considerations extra incessantly than girls, as they’re additionally extra prone to be employed in high-risk operations within the manufacturing facility.

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