On 16 – 17 February 2017, The Fair Labor Association, Stop Child Labour Coalition and iMentor are organizing a multi-stakeholder meeting titled “Strengthening Children’s Rights and Decent Work in the Agra Leather and Footwear Cluster”. The meeting is organized in close cooperation with the footwear companies Bata, Deichmann, El Corte Ingles and Astor Mueller.
Finding solutions together According to research held in Agra during 2015/2016, even though the export-oriented footwear manufacturers are making efforts to improve working conditions in their exporting facilities, in the many other production units, child labour and engagement of young workers remains a reality. This creates both poor reputation and reluctance on the part of international buyers to source from Agra. The primary objective of the multi-stakeholder meeting in February is to review possible solutions, brainstorm with practitioners and devise action plans to mitigate child labour risks and promote children’s rights and decent work in the Agra leather and footwear cluster.
Sub-objectives of the meeting are to:
- Jointly review of research results;
- Get exposure to active field level programs working on the resolution of child labour issues using an area-based approach;
- Start dialogue between various stakeholders and look for opportunities to cooperate • Agreeing on next steps and short, medium, and long-term goals;
- Formulate specific next steps over 2017/2018, including minimum performance indicators for all parties.
Participants The multi-stakeholder meeting will bring together more than 60 representatives from the leather and footwear sector including the industry represented by international buyers, suppliers and industry associations in Agra. Civil society organizations will be represented by national and international NGOs; grass roots level organizations, trade unions and multi-stakeholder initiatives. Government of India representatives (mainly from the state level departments) are expected to attend the event. Finally, supply chain practitioners and home-based workers in Agra who are well versed with the ground level realities shall join the proceedings.