Today, on the World Day for Decent work we proudly announce our programme to improve working conditions in the leather supply chain. As a group of seven NGOs from Austria, Bangladesh, Germany, India, the Netherlands and Pakistan we stand “Together for Decent Leather”.

The programme will be officially launched on 10 November from 12:00 to 14:00 Central European Time.

During the online launch, the organisations from India, Bangladesh and Pakistan will present the key facts and figures on the leather industry in their countries. They will elaborate on their efforts to curb  labour rights abuses and expand on the impact that the COVID-19 crisis has had on workers and their families in the three countries. Also, the programme will present the (preliminary) findings of our supply chain mappings of the leather industry and share recommendations how involved companies and governments can promote adherence to international labour standards and take responsibility for labour rights abuses.

Problems in the leather-based industry
In India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, hundreds of thousands  of people work in dire circumstances to produce leather-based garment, footwear and accessories. The problems they face include poverty wages, forced overtime, social security and child labour. Workers have health issues because of working with toxic substances and unsafe heavy machinery, often without adequate protective equipment. They also suffer from social exclusion and discrimination based on class, caste, origin, ethnicity, gender and religion. Specifically vulnerable groups are women workers, Dalits and Muslims, migrants, and homeworkers. Workers in this sector do not enjoy the fundamental enabling rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining.

About the project
This three year programme aims to improve working conditions and reduce labour rights abuses by promoting adherence to international labour standards and corporate social responsibility in leather based garment footwear and accessories value chains in production hubs in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

The project is organised by an European-Asian consortium, consisting of the following organisations: ARISA (the Netherlands), the Bangladesh Labour Foundation (BLF), Cividep India, INKOTA (Germany), NOW communities (Pakistan), SOMO (the Netherlands), Südwind (Austria).

You can find all information on this programme on the programme website

This programme is made possible with the financial support of the European Union, FNV and RVO. Its contents are the sole responsibility of the organising consortium and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union, FNV and RVO.