Thai Union looks to its workers’ rights

Dr Darian McBain: Dr Darian McBain: "We will continue to do our part to uphold human rights, and we remain committed to providing safe, legal and freely-chosen employment"

Thai Union Group has launched a Vessel Code of Conduct and vessel improvement programme to help improve ethical labour in the fishing sector.

The Vessel Code of Conduct is an extension of the Thai Union Business Labor and Ethics Code of Conduct, which is aligned with the United Nations Global Compact principles of upholding human rights.

“Our mission is to be the seafood industry’s leading agent of positive change. We will continue to do our part to uphold human rights, and we remain committed to providing safe, legal and freely-chosen employment,” said Dr Darian McBain, Thai Union’s global director for sustainable development.

Workers’ rights

Thai Union’s VCoC stipulates protocols on employee welfare, benefits, wages, age, the right to freedom of association, the right to collective bargaining, and non-negotiable frameworks for health and safety.

It also features specifically tailored clauses for application to vessels that reflect the unique set of working conditions that necessitate special consideration.

Thai Union’s existing and new suppliers are required to sign the Vessel Code of Conduct in order to conduct business with the company.

Vessel improvement

The VCoC includes a commitment by suppliers to develop a Vessel Improvement Program (VIP) to meet the clauses and address any non-compliance issues identified to be of a major or critical concern.

This provides suppliers with the ability to increase transparency, demonstrate accountability as well as to remedy any issues.

The Fishing Vessel Improvement Program and Vessel Code of Conduct is in line with Thai Union’s sustainability strategy, SeaChange.

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