Background

The Department of Labor recently announced the following awards aimed at improving labor standards and conditions in El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala, Malaysia, Mexico, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

- a $5 million cooperative agreement to improve workers’ rights in agricultural supply chains in Honduras and Guatemala and the garment sector in El Salvador, with a focus on gender and racial equity to address the systemic violation of internationally recognized workers’ rights in these sectors

- an $8 million grant to support a global health organization’s efforts to improve workplace safety and health in El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala, with a focus on preventing workplace illnesses, injuries, chronic kidney disease of non-traditional causes, and COVID-19 in the agricultural sectors of all three countries as well as in El Salvador’s textile industry

- a $5 million cooperative agreement to prevent and reduce forced labor and child labor abuses in the Malaysian palm oil and garment industries, which will support a project working with trade unions, civil organizations, migrant worker community leaders, government labor inspectors, and recruitment agencies to raise awareness of the root causes of forced labor and child labor abuses in these industries

- a $10 million cooperative agreement to strengthen gender equity efforts in Mexico and reduce workplace discrimination and harassment, which will work with multiple stakeholders to advance the gender equity goals of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement

- a $3 million cooperative agreement to improve compliance with international labor standards in the DRC, aimed at strengthening the ability of governments, employers, and workers to improve work conditions related to wages and hours and workplace safety

For more information on forced labor issues, please contact Amanda Levitt (at (212) 549-0148) or via email), David Olave (at (202) 730-4960 or via email), or Nicole Bivens Collinson (at (202) 730-4956 or via email). You can also click here for ST&R’s forced labor resources page.

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