European public buyers had the opportunity to delve deeper into Electronics Watch this week by participating in the European-wide webinar, 'Electronics Watch for Public Buyers', an online introduction to Electronics Watch addressing the monitoring methodology, the contract clauses that affiliates append to ICT contracts, as well as member benefits and requirements.
Following an initiative by the Green Party ('GroenLinks'), Utrecht's municipal council has decided to affiliate to Electronics Watch. The municipality is walking in the footsteps of other European public purchasers who have rallied forces to stimulate structural improvements among their suppliers of electronics. Utrecht is the first municipality to affiliate to Electronics Watch. The city's university hospital UMC Utrecht has already affiliated.
The University Medical Center Utrecht (UMC Utrecht) becomes the first public body from the Netherlands, and the first hospital, to affiliate to Electronics Watch. By doing so, they join forces with other public European purchasing organisations who want to promote structural improvements in the electronics sector.
The University of Aberdeen has officially joined other institutions to take a stand on the issue of labour rights in the electronics industry. Using their spending power to push for fair electronics, they have affiliated to Electronics Watch, an independent worker rights monitoring organisation growing in popularity across the public sector.
Years of hard work paid off this week, with the legal establishment of the Electronics Watch foundation, whose mission is to achieve respect for labour rights in the global electronics industry through socially responsible public purchasing in Europe. This milestone marks the official launch of its work to monitor the electronics factories of its affiliate members, and push for better conditions for workers in electronics supply chains across the globe.
We are very proud and excited to welcome the newly selected Board of Trustees (BoT) to Electronics Watch. Possessing a wide assortment of skills, expertise, cultural diversity, and deep knowledge of the regions of electronics production, they will work closely with Electronics Watch for at least the next two years on improving workers' rights in the global electronics industry.
The University of Durham becomes the fifth founding member of Electronics Watch, joining other European public sector buyers to push for better conditions for workers in the supply chains of the brands they have contracts with, and gain independent worker-led monitoring of the factories they use.
On Sunday 23 and Monday 24 November Electronics Watch held a workshop in Hong Kong with the objective of discussing the Electronics Watch Monitoring & Improvement and Reform Programmes. The workshop consisted of over 30 participants from civil society organisations, trade unions, labour rights groups and improvement initiatives from Hong Kong, China, Malaysia, Cambodia, Philippines, Indonesia, India, Vietnam, Thailand, and the US.
Electronics Watch is happy to welcome the University of Leeds another founding member from the UK. This victory is a result of a national student-led Sweatshop Free campaign supported by People & Planet, the UK's largest student campaigning network. The campaign is gathering huge momentum in Britain, with many more affiliations expected over the coming months.
An online petition "No more deaths in electronics sweatshops" has just been released on the Avaaz website. It aims to raise awareness and collect thousands of signatures in a call to local and national governments, and public sector organisations, to affiliate to Electronics Watch: a new independent organisation working to monitor working conditions in the electronics industry.