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Global electronics sector failing to be socially responsible

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A new publication reports on the global electronics sector’s failure to be socially responsible and calls for greater involvement of trade unions and civil society organisations in the regulation and control of the industry.

Greater involvement of trade unions and civil society organisations would enable electronics companies to better address human rights and environmental issues, states a new publication on corporate social responsibility in the global electronics sector.

The publication Reset. Corporate social responsibility in the global electronics supply chain was released on October 26 by the Dutch CSR Platform and the GoodElectronics network and is available for download here:

The report analyses the electronics sector’s failing effectiveness of corporate social responsibility (CSR) efforts and provides a sample of progressive initiatives and recommended steps for companies to enhance their social and environmental performance.

Reset describes the impact of the global electronics sector on communities, workers and the environment, reporting on problems such as sourcing from conflict zones, gender discrimination, increasing job insecurity, health risks for workers and local communities, wide scale dumping of waste in developing countries and the occurrence of child labour in waste processing.

International coordinator of GoodElectronics, Pauline Overeem: "Among the most pressing issues in the production phase is the non-respect for the freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining, disabling workers to address sub-standard working conditions, including long working hours, forced overtime, low wages, and all kinds of discriminatory practices."

GoodElectronics is an international network for contributing to sustainability and human rights. IMF is a founding member and active participant in the GoodElectronics Network, which brings together NGOs, trade unions, labour rights groups, environmental organisations, academics, researchers and activists aimed at common goal to contribute to sustainability and human rights in the global electronics sector.

The Dutch CSR Platform is a network of Dutch civil society organisations and trade unions that are working together to promote CSR.

Source: International Metalworkers Federation, 02-11-2009

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