Supply Chains

Gopinath Parakuni on Tamil Nadu’s Informal Shoe Stitchers

19 May 2017

Gopinath Parakuni

Download Filetype: MP3 - Size: 6.03MB - Duration: 6:35 m (128 kbps 44100 Hz)

In this interview, Gopinath Parakuni speaks with IHRB's Salil Tripathi about a campaign by Civil Initiatives for Development and Peace (Cividep) to highlight the working conditions of informal workers in the leather and shoe manufacturing sector in India. He spoke about the low wages, the lack of unionisation, the exposure to health and safety risks, and the absence of due diligence. He pointed out the role the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights could play in improving standards, and why focusing on brands and educating consumers is an important part of the campaign.

Gopinath is the general secretary of Cividep, a Bangalore-based organisation campaigning for workers’ rights and corporate accountability. Cividep has been working to educate and empower workers and communities in India to ensure that businesses comply with human rights, labour rights and environmental standards. It targets the garments, electronics, and leather and tea/coffee sectors. Cividep is also a member of a number of international networks, including the Good Electronics Network, OECD Watch and the Asian Network for the Rights of Occupational and Environmental Victims.

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