GAA Responds to Labour Abuse Accusations at Thai Facility11 June 2013
THAILAND - The Global Aquaculture Alliance has taken the accusations of labour abuse in a June 6 report by Warehouse Workers United and the International Labour Rights Forum very seriously and is determining a corrective course of action to ensure that the shrimp processing plant cited in the brief is adhering to Thai labour laws and the Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) standards.
The facility, Narong Seafood Co. Ltd. in Samutsakorn, Thailand, is BAP certified.
The BAP management team is following up with Narong Seafood, which will be required to respond to all accusations in the report, titled “The Walmart Effect: Child and Worker Rights Violations at Narong Seafood.” A corrective course of action will include ensuring that the facility was audited effectively.
GAA is committed to promoting social responsibility through its BAP certification programme.
Processing plants and farms certified against the BAP standards must ensure a safe, healthy working environment. The BAP standards also address wages and other terms of employment and the use of child and forced labour.
In total, the BAP processing plant standards contain 36 clauses relating to worker safety and employee relations. The BAP program is based on independent audits evaluating compliance with the BAP standards.
“These are serious allegations that need to be investigated. Through its BAP programme, GAA takes its role in promoting fair labour conditions very seriously, so any report of abuse at a BAP-certified facility is a matter of great concern,” said BAP Standards Coordinator Dan Lee.
“The report calls on major players like Walmart to help drive up labour standards in the global seafood industry, and the BAP programme provides an important tool for this job,” he added.
“Some seafood certification programmes side step the thorny issue of labour conditions. But, to its credit, GAA has adopted a comprehensive approach that attaches great importance to social issues.”
TheFishSite News Desk