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SHARED PROSPERITY: New Report Makes a Case for Investor Action on Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining


SHARED PROSPERITY: New Report Makes a Case for Investor Action on Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining

Investors to hear from workers, company representative and asset managers at Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI)-related events in Barcelona, Spain

BARCELONA, 29 November 2022 – The Global Unions’ Committee on Workers’ Capital (CWC) is launching a new campaign at a global gathering of investors in Barcelona today with a report that outlines why and how investors should react in cases where companies infringe on workers’ rights to join a union and bargain collectively. 

The CWC will launch Shared Prosperity: The Investor Case for Freedom of Association and Collective Bargainingat two events in Barcelona this week: a webcast event at its Workers’ Capital Conference on November 29 and PRI in Person on December 2. UNI Global Union is a participant in the CWC effort as a member of the Network Secretariat and co-author of the report. 

This kickoff in Barcelona is the start of a long-term engagement plan by CWC participants that will advance investor stewardship on labour rights recognition by companies.

The events will include a worker from an Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, where the company made a highly-publicized effort to prevent workers from joining a union last year, and an Amazon worker from a Barcelona warehouse, where the union has improved the company’s health and safety record. A company representative from Danone, speakers from asset managers Trillium and Columbia Threadneedle, and a member director from CARE Super will also speak to investors.

“Shared Prosperity” outlines investors’ human rights responsibilities and makes the strong business case for respecting fundamental labour rights.

The report describes the value created when workers exercise their labour rights, including improved corporate human rights due diligence, positive contributions to corporate performance in areas such as health and safety, retention, productivity, and diversity, equity, and inclusion. When investors uphold labour rights, they also help mitigate systemic risks associated with inequality and weak economic growth.

The report also includes guidelines for investors to embed labour rights into investment policies and implement investment stewardship practices that uphold the fundamental rights of freedom of association and collective bargaining.

With over 700 participants from 25 different countries, the Committee on Workers’ Capital is an international labour union network for dialogue and action on the responsible investment of workers’ capital. We connect labour activists and asset owner board members from around the world to promote information sharing and joint action in the field of workers’ capital. We are a joint initiative of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), the Global Unions Federations (GUFs) and the Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD (TUAC).