UNI Global Union affiliate, Finance Sector Union (FSU) in Australia, inaugurated its Human Rights Network (HRN) on 22 September 2021.
The FSU’s latest initiative aims to hold financial institutions to account for a range of important issues around corporations’ obligations to observe the rights of workers and communities they serve.
The union reiterated the importance of securing and defending the rights recognised and enshrined by the United Nations Declaration of Human Rights, such as equal pay, reasonable wages, and the right to join a union and bargain collectively.
They also pointed out that financial institutions have human rights obligations that are being tested regularly. The latest example is the recent coup in Myanmar where hundreds of bank workers have gone into hiding, and some tragically killed by the military regime.
The HRN is powered by a human rights benchmark for businesses in the financial services sector developed by human rights academics Dr. Kym Sheehan and Professor David Kinley. The benchmark will allow the FSU to evaluate how corporations impact human rights in Australia or wherever they operate.
Launching the HRN, FSU National Secretary Julia Angrisano said, “We will stand together for a finance sector that respects and promotes human rights in every interaction, at every opportunity.”
UNI Apro Regional Secretary Rajendra Acharya congratulated the FSU for this progressive initiative, and he said, “I am very proud of FSU’s efforts. They show that trade unions can lead the way in holding corporations to account for their human rights obligations. They are a role model, and I am excited for them to share more with fellow affiliates within the UNI finance network.”
Watch the launch here