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Saving lives by preventing discrimination in COVID-19 relief (IDSN Statement)
As COVID-19 sweeps across the world it is crucial that we ensure that relief, health services and awareness raising efforts are inclusive and accessible to all irrespective of caste, ethnicity, race, religion, sexual orientation, disability or other factors. While time is of the essence in the response to COVID-19, taking a moment to ensure that high risk communities such as Dalits are included and addressed in global, national and local responses to COVID-19, can save millions of lives.

IDSN and its members have documented discrimination in relief in relation to numerous disasters in the past including flooding, droughts and earthquakes, where Dalits have been left behind, not provided relief materials on an equitable basis and not given equal access to healthcare, shelter or rehabilitation due to ingrained stigma and discrimination.

There is a high risk that COVID-19 will also be widespread in caste-affected countries and it is therefore crucial that the unique nature of caste discrimination and the discriminatory practice of untouchability are taken into account. Therefore, Dalit communities and civil society organisations must be consulted and included in planning and implementation efforts to mitigate the serious repercussions of COVID-19.

The statement issued by IDSN outlines eight key factors that make Dalits a particularly high-risk group and offers eight key recommendations for state and non-state actors.
statement  IDSN  idsnnews  idsnpressrelease  2020  health  Dalit  caste  India  Nepal  Pakistan  Bangladesh  discrimination  labour  disaster_relief  COVID-19 
2 days ago by idsn
Dalit women producing leather footwear for global brands suffer serious labour rights abuses
A new report by Homeworkers Worldwide finds Dalit women working in global leather supply chains being subjected to discrimination, insecure work, low wages and labour rights abuses, including sexual harassment.
slavery  children  childlabour  women  Dalit  dalitwomen  caste  India  business  businessandhr  leather  2019  idsnnews  IDSN  news  gender  sexual_violence  labour 
october 2019 by idsn
No more silence: Companies must address caste in their global supply chains (ETI-UK)
Press Release – Ethical Trading Initiative – UK - Remaining silent about caste discrimination in global supply chains is fueling modern slavery, child labour and the exploitation of workers in South Asia, according to new ETI Base Code guidance for companies published today.
press_release  eti  business  businesskey  businessandhr  children  childlabour  slavery  labour  caste  dalit  2019  News  idsnnews  women  dalitwomen  India  Nepal  Pakistan  Bangladesh  dalitchildren  key 
september 2019 by idsn
Oxfam: Caste and gender underpin employment inequality in India
Inequality in employment along caste and gender lines is a massive obstacle to alleviating poverty and inequality in India, finds the Oxfam India report ‘Mind The Gap – State of Employment in India’. The report documents striking disparities in wages and opportunities. The report also highlights the strong links between caste and gender discrimination and forced, bonded and child labour as well as hazardous work.
caste  gender  women  dalitwomen  dalit  India  Oxfam  ingo  2019  idsnnews  news  business  businessandhr  labour  inequality 
july 2019 by idsn
The silent death of workers in India (Equal Times)
“Looking at the labour hierarchy means looking at the caste hierarchy. You are just as unlikely to find any upper class Hindus performing manual labour as you are to find high-risk jobs not being performed by lower castes, Dalits (untouchables) or Adivasis (tribal populations),” says Gautam Mody, secretary general of the New Trade Union Initiative. Every day three workers die in the factories of India. A sewer and gutter cleaner dies every week. None of them are of high caste.
caste  labour  business  businessandhr  businesskey  2019  india  press 
july 2019 by idsn
Policy Brief Ground Down by Growth: Oppression, Discrimination and Exploitation of Adivasis and Dalits in 21st century India (LSE)
This Policy Brief reports on oppression and discrimination against Dalits (the ex-untouchable castes) and Adivasis (tribal groups) perpetuating labour exploitation and land alienation, entrenching poverty and inequality in India. Dalits (officially
called Scheduled Castes by the Indian Government) and Adivasis (Scheduled Tribes), account for 200 million and 100 million people respectively, together making up one-quarter of the Indian population, and one in twenty-five of the global population. This brief is based on research carried out across India by the Programme of Research on Inequality and Poverty, Department of Anthropology, London School of Economics.
dalit  caste  2018  India  business  businessandhr  labour  childlabour  bondedlabour  forcedlabour  stigma  discrimination  briefing 
may 2019 by idsn
REPORT: Tainted Garments: The Exploitation of Women and Girls in India’s Home-based Garment Sector
Conducted by leading labour experts at the University of California. Key findings:
99.3% of the workers are either Muslims or belong to a heavily subordinated community, called a “Scheduled Caste.”
99.2% of workers toil in conditions of forced labour under Indian law, which means they do not receive the state stipulated minimum wage. In fact, most workers received between 50% and 90% less than the state-stipulated minimum wages. Only a handful of males working near the city of Jaipur received proper wages for their work.
95.5% of workers are female.
2019  India  caste  dalit  bondedlabour  slavery  slaverykey  slaveryindiakey  indiakey  businesskey  businessandhr  business  supplychain  Report  study  children  labour  dalitwomen  women  childlabour 
april 2019 by idsn
Study finds Dalits working in forced and child labour in India’s garment industry (IDSN News)
An extensive study on home-based garment workers in India found 99 per cent of workers toiled in conditions of forced labor under Indian law, with over 99 per cent of the workers found to be either Dalits or Muslims. The prevalence of child labour was over 15 per cent and many cases of bonded labour were also documented. 85 per cent of the workers supplied global brands.The report “Tainted Garments: The Exploitation of Women and Girls in India’s Home-based Garment Sector” was conducted by leading labour experts at the University of California.
2019  India  IDSN  idsnnews  news  caste  dalit  bondedlabour  slavery  slaverykey  slaveryindiakey  indiakey  businesskey  businessandhr  business  supplychain  Report  study  children  labour  dalitwomen  women  childlabour  statistics 
april 2019 by idsn
Problems persist in South Indian textile industry - new report (ICN)
Social accountability initiatives fail to bring improvements for workers in the South Indian textile industry. New report from ICN finds that complaint mechanisms have not remedied labour rights violations affecting girls and young women.
2018  caste  india  labour  business  icn  csr 
october 2018 by idsn
Sanitation worker deaths spark protests demanding an end to manual scavenging in India (IDSN)
Dalits in India have for centuries been forced into working without proper tools or protective gear to clean dry latrines, sewers and septic tanks, a practice known as ‘manual scavenging’. This is not only demeaning but also extremely dangerous work and activists have been campaigning for many years for the proper implementation of laws banning the practice and rehabilitating those who have been engaged in it. This past month it has been uncovered that in the Delhi municipality alone, there has been an alarmingly high number of deaths of sanitation workers lowered into the city’s sewers with no equipment to protect them. Activists are sending the message that India must #stopkillingus and that the caste-based practice must end now.
manualscavenging  Dalits  India  2018  idsnnews  idsn  news  discrimination  labour  slavery 
october 2018 by idsn
Report: Dalit men, women and children enslaved in India’s brick making industry (IDSN news)
A new report by Anti-Slavery International documents widespread slavery in India’s brick making industry and finds that the majority of workers are Dalits. Whole families, including small children, work 9-12 hour days in debt-bondage with little recourse to justice.

The report finds that discrimination and exclusion, along with the way brick kiln moulders are recruited and paid, underpins the widespread existence of slavery in the kilns and the limited opportunities for workers to escape.
idsnnews  2018  antislavery  ingo  India  labour  slavery  slaverykey  childlabour  children  childrenkey 
may 2018 by idsn
Rare slavery verdicts spark hope for ending caste-based slavery in Mauritania
For centuries a hereditary system of servitude has forced members of the Haratine ethnic minority to be subjected to slavery in Mauritania, working without pay as cattle herders and domestic servants, despite an official ban.

In March, Mauritania sentenced two men to 20 years in prison and one woman to 10 years in prison for enslaving their fellow citizens. These three rulings are extraordinary in the West African country, which has exceptionally few prosecutions for slavery. IDSN welcomes the verdicts as a sign of progress in the country.
mauritania  mauritaniakey  2018  slavery  labour  othercountries 
may 2018 by idsn
Report released: Dalit workers in India’s leather industry suffer serious rights abuses (IDSN News)
A report released by the India Committee on the Netherlands finds that workers in India’s leather industry suffer serious labour and human rights violations. Most of the 2,5 million leather workers are found to be Dalits and Muslims, exploited due to their marginalised status. India supplies leather to huge global brands.
India  IDSN  Dalit  caste  2017  humanrights  labour  business  idsnnews 
july 2017 by idsn
Dalit Woman Beaten Up for Refusing to be Maid - The New Indian Express
Three caste Hindus were booked for allegedly thrashing a Dalit woman who refused to work as a servant maid in the house of one of the accused.
caste  india  press  2015  labour  slavery  violence  violence_against_women 
november 2015 by idsn
Dalit girl of Theni village escapes from “hell” in spinning mill (The Hindu)
The girl, employed by a spinning mill was brutally attacked by the mill owners after trying to escape – says NGO demanding the arrest of the owners.
children  caste  india  press  2015  women  business  slavery  labour  sumangali 
october 2015 by idsn
ILO Resource Handbook for ending manual scavenging
The International Labour Organisation have now released the ILO Resource Handbook, a very useful tool in combating caste-based forced labour, and have also made a short summary of the handbook.
ilo  manualscavenging  caste  labour  slavery  untouchability  legislation  implementation  publication  2015  India  UN  dalit  business  ref  justice  businesskey 
july 2015 by idsn
Report from IDSN UN side event: Caste and Gender-Based Forced and Bonded Labour
REPORT - Caste and Gender-Based Forced and Bonded Labour from UN HRC29 IDSN SIDE-EVENT 18th June 2015, 17.00-18.30
slavery  caste  un  ilo  manualscavenging  haliya  nepal  india  pakistan  sumangali  dalit  prostitution  ref  business  labour  women  bondedlabour  southasia  2015  key  keyslavery  keywomen  businesskey  unkey 
july 2015 by idsn
Diluting India's child labour law will trap families in cycle of poverty (Op-ed in The Guardian - by IDSN and DNN)
An amendment to the act that was set to make child labour illegal will push millions of marginalised children in India into work rather than education
labour  caste  dalit  children  education  legislation  slavery  poverty  press  2015  IDSN  press_global  childlabour  economicrights 
may 2015 by idsn
Diversity in the workforce: why it is good for business (Ashwini Deshpande - ILO study)
Author: Ashwini Deshpande, Professor of Economics at the Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi. Prepared in collaboration with International Labour Organization (ILO) for the International Dalit Solidarity Network (IDSN).This study argues that a greater socio-economic diversity in the workforce at all levels of
employment, by which we mean greater representation or inclusion of groups which have been traditionally marginalized, such as Dalits, and under-represented in organized employment, will
not only have extremely positive repercussions for society as a whole, but more importantly,would make good business sense.
dalit  caste  private_sector  ilo  business  labour  India  2015 
may 2015 by idsn
Study: Diversity in the workforce - why it is good for business (Deshpande, ILO, IDSN)
This study argues that a greater socio-economic diversity in the workforce at all levels of
employment, by which we mean greater representation or inclusion of groups which have been
traditionally marginalized, such as Dalits, and under-represented in organized employment, will
not only have extremely positive repercussions for society as a whole, but more importantly,
would make good business sense.
Evidence across all states in India and in different sectors indicates that access to productive
employment and decent jobs remains confined to a few sections of the workforce. Labour is
divided by caste, religion, region, all of which overlap with class and gender with some castes
and religious groups practically absent in the top echelons of the private corporate sector.
Section II of the study contains a brief discussion of which groups are marginalized, excluded,
under-represented and why. Section III demonstrates how dealing with exclusion and adopting
a non-discriminatory policy is not only possible for the private sector, it is mandated by
international convention. Section IV discusses how this problem is similar to the situation in
racially divided advanced countries, such as the USA, UK, and other European countries and the
measures taken in these societies to redress under-representation. Section V discusses the
implications of the previous section for India and the specific steps which the private sector has
adopted and additional steps it can adopt.
The Appendix contains the code of conduct to promote affirmative action adopted in 2011 by
the Federation of Indian Chamber of Commerce and the All India Organisation of Employees.
business  caste  labour  2015  study  IDSN  dalit 
may 2015 by idsn
World Bank President and UN Secretary-General: Ending India’s caste-based exclusion is key to shared prosperity
Speaking at the Indian Council of World Affairs UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon stressed the need for inclusive growth for shared prosperity saying that, “millions of Dalits, Tribals and others still face discrimination, especially the women and girls.” On a visit to Gujarat the World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, similarly cautioned that while India was an accelerating economy, “Indian society has an enduring exclusion that is based, among other things, on caste identities. This bias can impede shared prosperity, serving as a basis for discrimination in many spheres, including in employment and other markets, as well as in public services.”
2015  caste  worldbank  UN  poverty  exclusion  labour  India  highlevel  dalit  economicrights  idsnnews  idsn  news 
march 2015 by idsn
Caste at the root of India and Mauritania’s position as top global slavery offenders
The Global Slavery Index 2014, released by the Walk Free Foundation, singles out India as the country in the world with the most slaves and sees caste at the root of slavery in India. Caste-affected Mauritania tops the Index on percentage of the population in slavery.
slavery  india  mauritania  pakistan  caste  2014  statistics  labour  idsnnews  dalit  children  idsn  news  ingo  childlabour 
january 2015 by idsn
India, Enforce Protection For "Untouchables" (World Policy Institute)
Because India’s jurisprudence remains ill-equipped to stringently provide legal protection for Dalits, human traffickers easily kidnap and lure vulnerable Dalit women and girls into prostitution and child marriage and men and children into bonded labor in factories and on farms.
slavery  atrocities  violence  caste  press  2014  india  labour  prostitution  sexual_violence  justice  dalit  women  impunity 
january 2015 by idsn
Where dust brings death (The Hindu)
Silicosis death in Rajasthan Mines. Dominated by the Bairwa and other Schedule Caste communities, mining is the main source of livelihood in this region. The poorest of the poor live here and the death of an earning member pushes the family into further poverty.
labour  slavery  caste  india  press  2014  dalit 
january 2015 by idsn
Unstoppable: Two workers risking lives to fight bonded labour in Sindh
Veeru escaped with her family and after months of fighting for her family and begging the police to protect them, she finally found refuge in a camp inhabited by other former bonded labourers. It was then that she decided to dedicate her life to freeing others like her.
press  2014  pakistan  labour  slavery  bondedlabour  hr_defenders  resistance  caste  dalit  women  keywomenpakistan  hrdefenders 
january 2015 by idsn
Caste discrimination, child labour and the Nobel peace prize winner
Caste discrimination is a key factor behind child labour in India - is the message coming from experts on child labour. The Nobel Peace Prize winner, Kailash Satyarthi, also explains how witnessing caste discrimination as a child spurred on his engagement with fighting for the rights of the most marginalised.
caste  india  2014  idsnnews  idsn  news  labour  slavery  nobel  hrw  children  dalit  childlabour 
october 2014 by idsn
Contours of caste disadvantage (The Hindu)
By Ashwini Deshpande. Traditional hierarchies are too deeply entrenched to be reversed through one single measure; they need a concerted push, backed by strong will from different segments of society, including, but not confined to, politicians
caste  2014  press  india  politics  labour  dalit  statistics  economicrights 
october 2014 by idsn
Slavery and Dalit Child Labour in India’s Hand-Made Carpet Industry
New Harvard report finds that, “minority castes and ethnic groups remain heavily exploited in India’s carpet sector. The fact that 99.9% of cases documented belonged to these communities is a blistering indictment of the country’s inability to protect and empower its most vulnerable and disenfranchised citizens.”
business  caste  2014  india  report  labour  slavery  children  dalit  childlabour 
october 2014 by idsn
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