MSP in practice

Syrian textile workers in Turkey can continue to raise awareness of labour abuses through the Worker Support Center and the grievance mechanism of the Turkish NGO MUDEM-Refugee Support Center (MUDEM-RSC). 

The continuation of the Worker Support Centre (WSC) grievance mechanism is possible through funding from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) for the next one and a half years. This was an initiative of the companies OrsayPrimark and C&A, which used the grievance mechanism in the past and wanted to maintain it. Therefore, they approached the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles after the financial support of the Laudes Foundation had expired.

In Turkey, an estimated 500,000 to 1,000,000 Syrian refugees are employed in the informal sector. These people are highly vulnerable to social risks such as abuse, discrimination or inhumane working conditions. MUDEM-RSC founded the WSC in response to this in 2018.

Workers in the textile sector can report legal and social problems as well as abuses at the workplace via a website. MUDEM-RSC staff take up the workers’ concerns, contact them and try to find solutions together. MUDEM-RSC also works directly with some companies and suppliers to develop workplace improvement plans. Around 1,000 factories with approximately 200,000 workers are involved in the programme.

Such cooperations between large companies and local organisations are very important to the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles. They make it possible to directly address local challenges that local organisations know well, and cultural or language barriers are less of a challenge. Best practices and common issues are regularly exchanged between partners and further activities are also planned with MUDEM-RSC, such as training for workers on their rights.

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