2019 February 21

Call to Industry to Prevent Forced Labour Risks

Electronics Watch and our monitoring partner, the Migrant Worker Rights Network (MWRN), have for over two years been documenting excessive recruitment-related fees and expenses that migrant workers from Myanmar pay to get a job at two sites of Cal-Comp Electronics (Thailand). While working conditions have improved in some respects following buyer intervention, industry attempts to detect, remedy and prevent excessive recruitment fees and related forced labour risk have not yet been effective.

Electronics Watch and MWRN therefore call for Cal-Comp to urgently:

  • Fully reimburse all migrant workers who have paid illegal and excessive recruitment fees.
  • Prevent forced labour risks through zero-cost recruitment in accordance with the widely endorsed Employer Pays Principle. Cal-Comp should itself pay migrant workers' total recruitment-related service fees and expenses in advance and ensure recruitment agents do not themselves charge workers fees.

Electronics Watch and MWRN recognise the systemic challenges faced by electronics companies and other global labour intensive industries in effectively ensuring zero cost and ethical migrant worker recruitment, and recommend the global electronics industry should:

  • Provide a strong demand-side market signal to stimulate suppliers and recruitment agencies to "get it right the first time" with zero-cost and ethical recruitment.
  • Reform monitoring techniques and support worker-driven monitoring where possible to better detect, remedy and prevent recruitment fees and other forced labour risks facing migrant workers in global supply chains.

Read the full statement, the remedy proposal, and the Cal-Comp report