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H&M suppliers in India discuss effective GFA implementation

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29 October, 2019More than a hundred H&M suppliers who employ hundreds and thousands of workers, participated in joint workshops organized by IndustriALL and Swedish clothing company H&M to discuss the global framework agreement (GFA) and its implementation.

IndustriALL Global Union and H&M hosted workshops on GFA implementation in Bengaluru and Delhi on 15 and 24 October.

“The GFA helps to build mutual trust and respect between unions and employers. Effective implementation of the GFA has positive outcomes for workers as well as business, with the creation of good reputations as suppliers. The GFA also facilitates the implementation of international labour standards,”

said Christina Hajagos-Clausen, IndustriALL’s textile director to H&M suppliers at Bengaluru.

There are three steps to the GFA implementation:

  • A commitment to promote industrial relations at the factory level
  • A national monitoring committee (NMC), that provides a national structure for dispute resolution through negotiations and a platform for collaboration and capacity building towards effective implementation of the GFA. The NMC in India includes representatives from H&M and IndustriALL, and is the first NMC to have only women members.
  • A steering group that plans and oversees practical aspects of the GFA, as well as provide support and guidance to the NMC

H&M representatives underlined the necessity of having processes in place to ensure good business and to promote India as a good sourcing market.

Suppliers were encouraged to engage with the NMC for a dialogue, to address concerns, and to promote good industrial relations in the supply chain.

Apoorva Kaiwar, IndustriALL South Asia regional secretary, addressed H&M suppliers in Delhi and said:

“The GFA implementation processes, including the national monitoring committees, support factory management and unions in achieving good industrial relations. Cooperation and structures for providing conflict resolutions are some of the key features of the GFA.”

IndustriALL and H&M will provide training for both management and union representatives on employers’ responsibilities, workers’ rights and obligations, industrial relations, collective bargaining agreements and peaceful conflict resolution.