>   SEARCH    
 > BROWSE Articles by :   - subject
 > GALS Home  - author
 > GALS Books  - journal
 > Working Papers   
   > SHOW ALL Articles sorted by

  Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
 
Adams, Roy J., "Choice or Voice? Rethinking American Labor Policy in Light of the International Human Rights Consensus", Employee Rights and Employment Policy Journal v. 5 no2 (2001) p. 521-548

Abstract:
This article argues that the right to bargain collectively has emerged as an internationally recognized human right. Part II reviews the development of the international workers' rights consensus that defines collective bargaining as a human right. Part III considers two interpretations of the international consensus endorsing collective bargaining: choice versus voice. The choice approach holds that a nation is in compliance with international standards if its working people are permitted to engage in collective bargaining. The voice approach sets a higher standard, insisting that to comply with international obligations states must ensure that all employees have an independent collective voice through which their employment interests may be represented. Part IV argues that policies based on choice are deficient, and states adopting a choice approach fail to abide by their international obligations. In particular, the author claims that by conflating freedom of association and the right to bargain collectively rather than treating them as distinct and equal rights, the United States denies a collective voice at work to a majority of American workers. Finally, Part V considers some of the steps that the U.S. government might take to bring its domestic policies in line with the international consensus.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Afzal, Asna, "Pakistan, the WTO, and Labor Reform", Boston College International and Comparative Law Review v. 29 no107 (Winter 2006) p. 107-122

Abstract:
Although the WTO has no formal requirements for its members to adhere to labor standards, this article argues that Pakistan and other lesser-developed countries (LDCs) confront considerable pressure to abide by core labor standards in connection with their trade liberalization policies. It argues that developed nation trading partners, above all the United States, the European Union and Canada, seek assurances, upon threat of economic sanctions, that LDCs' export products are made in accordance with accepted labor standards both as a way to protect their own industries and to avoid scandals associated with child labor and sweatshop conditions. Because these demands from the countries of the global North do not acknowledge the economic realities of lesser developed nations, Pakistan's adherence to labor standards in such areas as health and safety, child labor and gender discrimination, are typically "superficial" and unenforced. The article proposes reforms in three areas if Pakistan is to benefit from economic growth and implement meaningful labor standards: (1) civil service reform to promote efficiency and accountability in monitoring labor standards; (2) full employment and anti-poverty measures that would sufficiently raise living standards so that parents would voluntarily remove children from the labor market; and, (3) increased representation for Pakistan and other LDCs in the WTO decision-making process.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Child Labor, Health and Safety, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Workplace Discrimination, World Trade Organization (WTO)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 11
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Anderson, Gordon, "Labour Law in a Globalising World", Modern Law Review v. 66 no4 (July 2003) p. 640-649

Abstract:
This article reviews Social and Labour Rights in a Global Context: International and Comparative Perspectives, a book comprised of a collection of papers originating from a 2001 conference in England on international labor rights and the nature of globalization. The book addresses three themes: responses to globalization, the potential for fundamental social rights in the EU, and the constitutionalization and enforcement of social rights. The collection as a whole paints a pessimistic picture of the future for social and labor rights within the countries it discusses. The picture is one of labor rights under pressure domestically from market-driven political agendas and internationally from mobile capital uses its economic power both to relocate to the most business-friendly environment and to encourage a lowering of standards in countries eager to attract such companies. The reviewing author concludes that prospect for the development and protection of labor rights around the world seems weak in light of the WTO's unwillingness to be involved in promoting labor rights and the lack of governmental support for ILO initiatives.

Subjects: European Union, International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.), World Trade Organization (WTO)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 12
 
Arthurs, Harry, "Reinventing Labor Law For the Global Economy: The Benjamin Aaron Lecture", Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law v. 22 no2 (2001) p. 271-294

Abstract:
This article looks broadly at the relationship between national labor law and the global economy, and surveys the various forms of rule-making and dispute resolution currently used to address international labor disputes. Part One sets out a broad definition of globalization as a neo-liberal political system. Part Two asks why lawyers continue to perceive labor law as a national, rather than a global, phenomenon. Part Three examines how globalization is influencing industrial relations. Part Four looks at five types of mechanisms currently used to set international labor standards—treaties and conventions; dissemination of “best practices;” codes of conduct; international union campaigns; and social movement consumer campaigns. It concludes that these diffuse standards hold the keys to an emerging international labor law regime for the global economy.

Subjects: Corporate Codes of Conduct, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 2
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Ashiagbor, Diamond, "EMU and the Shift in the European Labour Law Agenda: From 'Social Policy' to 'Employment Policy'", European Law Journal v. 7 no3 (2001) p. 311-330

Abstract:
The author argues that, because of the unemployment problem, EU policymaking discourse is increasingly emphasizing labor market "flexibility" and job creation, while downplaying traditional emphasis on employment protection and high labor standards. Increasingly, as policymakers have tried to even out unemployment rates throughout the EU, they have adopted the assumption that high unemployment has been caused by rigidities in European labor markets, despite scant evidence for this position. The dominant style of regulation has accordingly shifted away from legislation and expenditures of funds to create jobs, toward employment creation policies and soft law dependent on the social partners. The article reviews some of the major policy statements of EU organs and concludes that EU employment policy (1) remains "facilitative, rather than prescriptive" and (2) remains stunted by a tension between advocates of deregulation and intervention.

Subjects: European Union, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 6
 
Barry, Christian & Reddy, Sanjay G., "Global Justice and International Economic Arrangements: International Trade and Labor Standards: A Proposal for Linkage", Cornell International Law Journal v. 39 (Fall 2006) p. 545-637

Abstract:
The authors argue for making rights to trade conditional upon promotion of labor standards. They detail the five standard objections to such "linkage"-that it is: inconsequential, an inferior means of improving labor standards, creates an unfair distribution of burdens, is politically imperialistic, and is unfeasible. Their "constructive procedure" identifies various linkage proposals that avoid these objections. To demonstrate the feasibility of linkage, the authors conclude with a detailed example of how a linkage system based on WTO institutions and overseen by the ILO would work in practice. Two useful appendices use UNIDO industrial statistics to chart the likely effects of improvement in labor standards on labor costs.

Subjects: International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights as Human Rights, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Trade Agreements, Trade Conditionality, World Trade Organization (WTO)
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Budd, John W., "Fairness at Work, and Maybe Efficiency but not Voice: An Evaluation of the Arthurs’ Commission Report", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 29 no4 (2008) p. 477-489

Abstract:
This article seeks to discern the analytical framework of the Arthurs’ Report, which studies and critiques employment law covering Canadian Federal employees. After explaining several possible frameworks – egoist, unitarist, pluralist and critical – the author concludes that Arthurs falls into the pluralist school of thought. Pluralist policies embrace significant government regulation to equalize bargaining power between employees and employers. The author argues that the Arthurs’ report would be stronger if it explicitly recognized its analytical approach so that policy makers might move beyond specific proposals and more easily debate the underlying assumptions. The author then suggests that the Arthurs’ Report would benefit from emphasizing not only efficiency and equity in the workplace, but also employee voice. This article concludes by applauding the overall effort of the Arthurs’ Report, despite current obstacles to its implementation.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Collective Bargaining, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 8, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Collins, Erika C. & Mokros, Bradley R. & Simmons, John, "Labor and Employment Developments from Around the World", International Lawyer v. 37 no2 (Summer 2003) p. 329-357

Abstract:
This article reviews international legal developments in the field of business regulation, summarizing labor and employment regulations enacted in various countries in 2002. Eighteen different countries, ranging from Australia to the Netherlands to the United Kingdom, are discussed in alphabetical order. Topics span a broad spectrum from paid parental leave to reform of copyright law to protection for part-time employees.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 3, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Conaghan, Joanne, "Labour Law and New Economy Discourse", Australian Journal of Labour Law v. 16 no1 (March 2003) p. 1-49

Abstract:
This article explores the emergence of narratives and counter-narratives of the New Economy and the implications of these narratives for labor law, with particular reference to recent developments in Australian labor law and elsewhere. First, the author discusses the shifting theoretical characteristics of labor law, noting the contentious and evolving role of the New Economy discourse in this process. Second, the author examines the impact that this discourse is having on the scope and content of labor law. The author concludes by cautioning labor law scholars to approach the idea of the New Economy with caution and skepticism so as to prevent competing discourses from being eclipsed by any one super-narrative.

Subjects: Australia, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 10
 
Cooney, Sean, "A Broader Role for the Commonwealth in Eradicating Foreign Sweatshops?", Melbourne University Law Review v. 28 (August 2004) p. 290-342

Abstract:
This article examines the link between Australian firms and foreign sweatshop labor and suggests potential legislative strategies that could be taken to combat these substandard working conditions. The author describes how Australian firms are most commonly linked to sweatshop labor through supply chains that operate in the labor markets of developing countries where competition to secure production contracts drives factories to impose long hours, low wages, and dangerous working conditions. The article reviews several forms of regulation that are currently used in Australia to combat sweatshop labor: obligations imposed by common law and statute, self-regulatory initiatives in the private sector, and voluntary multi-stakeholder initiatives involving non-governmental organizations ('NGOs') and international agencies. The author argues that none of these regulatory approaches has more than a marginal effect in encouraging Australian firms to eradicate sweatshop labor conditions in their supply chains. The author proposes that to combat sweatshop labor, firms producing overseas should be divided into two groups. The first group, Australian firms with "egregious" labor conditions in their supply chains, should be subject to sanctions for not taking appropriate measures to eradicate sweatshop conditions in their overseas suppliers. The second group, firms with "poor conditions," should be required to report their efforts to eliminate these conditions in their supply chains. If firms in the second group either do not report or report fraudulently, they should be sanctioned. The article also suggest that a new government agency be formed to work collaboratively with firms, NGOs, and trade unions to develop common strategies, principles, and metrics for establishing uniform reporting and evaluation methods. The article concludes by stressing that these legislative measures would need to be worked out in detail and put into practice in an experimental and revisable way.

Subjects: Australia, Case Studies: Country-Specific, Corporate Accountability, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 7, Issue 2
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || WWW || 
 
Cummins, Justin, "Invigorating Labor: A Human Rights Approach in the United States", Emory International Law Review v. 19 no1 (2005) p. 1-68

Abstract:
The article argues that international human rights law should be used to prosecute labor violations in the United States. Part II discusses the context and rationales for this approach, including (1) the ambivalence of globalization, which encourages both a race to the bottom for worker protections but has seen the helped to spur the development of new human rights conventions; (2) Supreme Court rulings affirming international human rights doctrines; and (3) the failure of the National Labor Relations Act to protect US workers. Part III discusses judicial treatment of this strategy under the Alien Tort Claims Act and other statutes. Part IV details looming technical objections, including lack of subject matter jurisdiction, Garmon preemption and preclusion for want of state action. Part V recommends an approach to venue, party, jurisdiction, substantive claims and alliances that might provide a successful test case. Part VI concludes that this strategy should fortify the emerging alliance of labor, civil rights and human rights proponents and overcome the isolation and marginalization of workers.

Subjects: Alien Torts Claims Act, Corporate Accountability, Extraterritorial Application of Law, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 8
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Diamond, Stephen F. , "The Race to the Bottom Returns: China's Challenge to the International Labor Movement", University of California Davis Journal of International Law and Policy v. 10 no39 (2003) p. 39-74

Abstract:
In The Race to the Bottom Returns, Professor Diamond explores the impact of China's integration into the world economy on labor relations in China and in the developed world. He begins by engaging with a long-simmering debate about whether there is a "race to the bottom" in labor standards--a flight of capital to the lowest labor cost countries. He rejects the simplistic accounts of the "race to the bottom" and says the real issue is "the ability of sophisticated multinational corporate capital to combine high-productivity technology with labor that is paid substantially less than that found in the developed world." Professor Diamond goes on to explore the ramifications of this new form of capital-labor combination. He shows how this new form of capitalism is a vast departure from the industrial relations era in which productivity and wages were linked by a variety of democratic political and economic institutions. The new era, he argues, rests upon authoritarian regimes such as the one that exists in China today. The article describes the authoritarian nature of the Chinese production system and its state-sponsored trade unions. He demonstrates that the economic success of China in recent decades depended upon state-sponsored repression of genuine trade unionism. He ends by criticizing those in the global labor movement who seek constructive engagement with existing Chinese institutions, arguing that it is more important to bring about democratic reform.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, China, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 3, Issue 12
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
diCaprio, Alisa , "Are Labor Provisions Protectionist?: Evidence from Nine Labor-Augmented U.S. Trade Arrangements", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 26 no1 (2004) p. 1-34

Abstract:
This article explores whether labor provisions in U.S. trade arrangements have been used by protectionist interests to block imports. The first section gives a brief historical background on the four types of worker rights provisions that are found in modern U.S . trade arrangements: 1) unilateral trade preferences, 2) bilateral trade agreements, 3) free trade agreements, and 4) "other" provisions (i.e., provisions that do not fit within the first three categories). The second section analyzes the extent to which the labor provisions are a protectionist mechanism to block imports. Here the author examines the stage at which a labor provision is put into a trade arrangement, whether it be in the initiation, design, or actual implementation stage. She argues that it is misleading to characterize labor provisions as protectionist when the reason for their inclusion is to advocate human rights in general or when they are used as a threat ( i.e., threatened withdrawal of benefits or monetary sanctions), rather than actually implemented. The author concludes that the role of labor protective provisions will probably diminish because the humanitarian and labor groups that advocate them are becoming disillusioned with the leverage they provide, and are seeking methods with more immediate results.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.), NAFTA/GATT, Trade Conditionality
Newsletter: Vol 4, Issue 12
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Doek, Jaap E., "Overview: The Protection of Children’s Rights and the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child: Achievements and Challenges", St. Louis University Public Law Review v. 22 p. 235-252

Abstract:
In this article, the author considers the extent to which the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) has succeeded in protecting children’s rights under international law, and urges that additional steps be taken to enhance enforcement and protection of these rights. First, the author details achievements in the field of children’s rights since the CRC went into effect on September 2, 1990. This section focuses on progress in the areas of children in armed conflict, commercial sexual exploitation of children, and child labor. Next, the author discusses improvements for children in the areas of legal protection, health care and education since 1990 that can be attributed directly or indirectly to the implementation of the CRC. The author then explores the challenges that the international community faces in its attempt to fully implement the CRC, and argues that the elimination of poverty should be the first priority. The author concludes that it is possible to continue to improve the plight of children and urges all concerned entities to continue to take all necessary measures to build a world fit for children.

Subjects: Child Labor, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), United Nations (UN)
Newsletter: Vol 3, Issue 1
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Drummonds, Henry H., "Transnational Small and Emerging Business in a World of Nikes and Microsofts", Journal of Small and Emerging Business Law v. 4 (2000) p. 249-306

Abstract:
This Article considers the nature and effects of economic globalization against the backdrop of the controversial December 1999 World Trade Organization meetings in Seattle, Washington and the April 2000 meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund in Washington, D.C. Parts II and III discuss the causes and effects of labor market globalization and the opportunities and challenges globalization presents for small and emerging businesses, which benefit from entrepreneurial adaptability, but which face increased competition. Parts IV and V survey the normative debate about globalization and note that global labor markets expose and expand concerns for establishing core labor standards to protect employees from abuse and denial of basic rights. Part VI considers the effects of globalization on U.S labor and employment law. Part VII argues that although proposed mechanisms for establishing core labor standards must involve governmental oversight, private ordering will play the largest role in fixing the terms and conditions of employment in the increasingly global labor markets. Part VIII offers a brief conclusion.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.), World Trade Organization (WTO)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 11
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Engle, Karen, "Special Feature: Working Borders: Linking Debates About Insourcing and Outsourcing of Capital and Labor", Texas International Law Journal no40 (Summer 2005) p. 691-798

Abstract:
This article summarizes a conference on "Working Borders: Linking Debates About Insourcing and Outsourcing of Capital and Labor" held at the Univ. of Texas Law School in February, 2005. The conference focused on two phenomonon: "Insourcing," i.e., US employers' "importing" immigrant labor, particularly Mexicans, to perform low-wage service work; and "Outsourcing," i.e. the movement of high-tech service work abroad. The speakers conceptualized insourcing and outsourcing as complementary and inevitable dynamics of economic globalization. They also linked US debates on immigration reform to jobs lost to outsourcing. They discussed regulatory responses to global flows of goods, capital and labor, and they examined the prevailing citizenship model that links rights to nation of birth. In the concluding roundtable, participants discussed the prospects for promoting and regulating of labor rights in a way that would make insourcing and outsourcing less exploitative of both immigrant and outsourced workers.

Subjects: Labor Mobility, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Outsourcing, Undocumented Workers
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Fahlbeck, Reinhold, "Comparative Labor Law - Quo Vadis?", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 25 no7 (2003) p. 7-19

Abstract:
Drawing on three decades' experience, the author discusses benefits and challenges for future comparative legal researchers. He distinguishes between factual research on "what" questions and explorative research on "why" questions. Parts II and III elaborate the how/what distinction as between "mainstream" descriptive work and analytical research on interactions of foreign and domestic law. Both types of research suffer from an absence of a general method and a defined body of comparative law. However, both approaches provide the benefit of enhancing understanding of one's own country and uncovering hidden biases as well as possibilities. Section IV gives examples of "why" questions that are best answered comparatively, such as the question, "Why is US union density low?" Section V calls for a new multi-disciplinary method which understands industrial relations as parallel to other "sub-systems" (political, economic and cultural) in each country.

Subjects: Comparative Labor Law, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Fichter, Michael & Helfen, Markus & Sydow, Jörg, "Regulating Labor Relations in Global Production Networks: Insights on International Framework Agreements", Internationale Politik und Gesellschaft (International Politics and Society) no2 (June 2011) p. 68-86

Abstract:
Unions are developing a strategy to bring to bear on the transnational regulation gap with regard to labor relations. One important tool they have devised for this task is the International Framework Agreement (IFA). However, IFA policy is highly corporate-oriented and may differ considerably from one Global Union Federation (GUF) to another and actual implementation has progressed slowly or not at all. A number of lessons can already be drawn from this.

Subjects: International Framework Agreements, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 10, Issue 6
Full-text links: || WWW || 
 
Filho, Roberto Fragale, "Comparative Labor and Employment Law and Policy in the Next Quarter Century: Celebrating Twenty-Five Years and Speculating Over the Future From a Brazilian Perspective", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 25 (Fall 2003) p. 21-31

Abstract:
This article speculates about the future of labor law from the Brazilian perspective. In Part I, the author describes four different conflict theories that attempt to explain the social dynamics that underlie labor law: "capital vs. labor," "qualified labor vs. non-qualified labor," "social inclusion vs. social exclusion," and "labor vs. post-labor." The author shows how each conflict theory predicts a different future for labor law. For example, the author argues that if the field of labor law is characterized as a conflict between capital and labor, the law will not undergo major changes. However, if the field is characterized as a conflict between labor and "post-labor," labor law will have to address problems caused by short-term jobs, work force mobility, the need for continuous education, and the increasing importance of "free time." The author concludes Part I by arguing that Brazil provides a real-world laboratory for investigating the different conflict theories. In Part II, the author discusses how labor law has affected the Brazilian court system. He notes that the courts have been overwhelmed with approximately two million labor cases a year for the past ten years. The author investigates two different approaches to solve the problem of judicial crowding: making changes in the judicial system, and using alternative dispute resolution and class action suits to reduce of the number of cases heard by courts. In Part III, the author draws on the Brazilian experience to suggest an agenda for comparative labor law scholarship, arguing that labor law studies must integrate with other disciplines.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Contingent Work, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 4, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Finkin, Matthew W., "International Governance And Domestic Convergence In Labor Law As Seen From The American Midwest", Indiana Law Journal v. 76 (Winter 2001) p. 143-172

Abstract:
This article explores the possibilities for developing transnational labor standards appropriate for a global economy. The author covers the six major proposed processes or models with the potential to implement global labor standards: 1) the common market route, 2) the ILO, 3) extraterritorial application of domestic law, 4) trade agreements with preferences linked to the observance of specific labor regulations, 5) trade agreements which mandate a country’s observance of its own labor regulations, and 6) corporate codes of conduct. The author then argues that the potential for such standardization seems to be hindered by the unwillingness of the current U.S. legal system to learn about or emulate the labor standards developed in European countries. Through a comparison of labor standards in two states within the U.S. -- Indiana and Minnesota -- the author demonstrates the gulf between jurisdictions even within the U.S. system. The author argues that when courts in Indiana are unwilling to accept precedent from Michigan, they are at least equally unlikely to guidance from labor standards from Germany.

Subjects: Extraterritorial Application of Law, International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Trade Conditionality
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 8
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Fuchs, Maximilian, "The Bottom Line of European Labour Law (Part I)", International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations v. 20 no2 (Summer 2004) p. 155-176

Abstract:
The author examines the development of European Labor Law, a field that has been characterized by the tension between economic and social interests. Part I gives a historic account of how the role of labor law in the EU has expanded from a limited role under the pure economic model of the original European Economic Community Treaty (EEC Treaty), to a major role within the current context of European integration. The author describes the development of a social policy approach in the 1970s, the crucial role played by social partners, the passing of the Community Charter of Fundamental Social Rights of Workers and the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, and the far-reaching role of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in integrating social concerns into European labor law. He also discusses collective labor law, emphasizing the area of employee participation in management decision-making. The author addresses the concern that the new European employment policy will adversely affect European labor law by arguing that the tension between the two is nothing more than the fundamental conflict in social and economic coordination that has been addressed in the Community’s policies of flexibility and security.

Subjects: European Union, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 4, Issue 1
 
Fuchs, Maximilian, "The Bottom Line of European Labour Law (Part II)", International Journal of Comparative Labour Law and Industrial Relations v. 20 no3 (Fall 2004) p. 423-444

Abstract:
This is the second part of a two-part series examining the development of European Labor Law, a field that has been characterized by the tension between economic and social interests. The article begins with a description of the right to freedom of movement of labor within the EU, an area that most experts tout as a success story of European integration. The author then explores the influence of European labor legislation on national labor law in the areas of freedom to make employment contracts, anti-discrimination, atypical employment, reconciliation of family life and work, company restructuring, collective labor law, and employee health and safety protection. He evaluates each of these areas in light of the piecemeal nature of European Labor Law and the continuing need to strike a balance between economic and social objectives.

Subjects: Contingent Work, European Union, Health and Safety, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 4, Issue 7
 
Garcia, Frank J., "Building a Just Trade Order for a New Millennium", George Washington International Law Review v. 33 no3/4 (2001) p. 1015-1062

Abstract:
This article advocates a clearly articulated normative framework for the analysis of international trade law. To build the argument, the author discusses the concept of distributive and corrective justice, as well as moral obligation in international trade law. He shows how free trade could be justified under utilitarian, libertarian and egalitarian approaches to liberal theory. Such an approach, the author concludes, would help structure a just international trade law that ensures that international trade benefits the least advantageous states, and allows for an effective protection of human rights.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 1, Issue 3
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Goldman, Alvin, "A Perspective on the Next Quarter Century of Comparative Labor Law", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 25 no33 (2003) p. 33-42

Abstract:
Part I paints a picture of the global political economy of the next 25 years: population will increase in poor, authoritarian countries while the environment will be degraded. This will increase pressure for a global race to the bottom. Part II argues that wealthy nations will debate two approaches: (1) isolationism instituted through small regional alliances and trade; and (2) sacrificing some wealth to "ease the burden of poor nations" by shoring up international laws and strengthening global social standards. In support of the latter approach, the author asks if law can reduce poor people's suffering and ensure equitable resource distribution. He argues that the next generation of comparative labor law will address this question by including analysis of tax law, business associations, regulation of competition, education law, social security, trade and immigration. The author calls for a reinvigoration of global values from "delusions of consumerism" to equitable social institutions and conservation.

Subjects: Comparative Labor Law, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Goolsby, John H., "Is the Garment Industry Trying to Pull the Wool Over Your Eyes? The Need for Open Communication to Promote Labor Rights in China", Law & Inequality: Journal of Theory and Practice v. 19 no2 (Summer 2001) p. 193-227

Abstract:
This Note addresses the interplay between labor conditions in China, principles of national sovereignty, free-market labor theory, and global human rights. Section II offers a description of five possible approaches for addressing labor violations in China – relying on China's own municipal laws; advancing labor rights through Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) [formerly Most Favored Nation status]; applying business codes of conduct; implementing intergovernmental organizations' mechanisms for promoting compliance with treaties; and promoting greater awareness among Chinese workers of their own legal rights through communications media such as the Internet. Section III assesses the effectiveness of the various strategies by first looking at their limitations, and then discussing how those limitations might be overcome. The author argues that the unifying theme behind all the strategies for improving workers' rights in China must be a drive for more open communication; specifically, Chinese laborers must have greater access to information about their rights under international standards and the laws of their own country, they must be able to voice grievances effectively, and outsiders must have access to information concerning working conditions in Chinese factories. The Article concludes that a reduction in constraints on communication is necessary to advance each of these goals, and that the Internet holds unique promise for doing so. Thus for China to be open for business without trammeling workers' rights, it must also become open to the free flow of ideas.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, China, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 1, Issue 1
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Gordon, Jennifer, "Transnational Labor Citizenship", Southern California Law Review v. 80 (March 2007) p. 503-599

Abstract:
This article develops the idea of "transnational labor citizenship" (TNC), a new approach to structuring cross-border labor migration. In an increasingly global market for labor, the author contends that closed borders are untenable. Instead, she proposes that permission to enter the US in search of work be linked to membership in new cross-border worker organizations, rather than to the current requirement of a job offer from an employer. Unlike guest worker programs, which ultimately degrade labor institutions and conditions, the TNC approach would facilitate the enforcement of baseline labor rights and allow migrants to carry benefits, services and rights with them as they move. The author contends that linking migration to membership in a transnational worker organization would facilitate the free movement of people while preventing the erosion of working conditions in the countries that receive them. For TNC to work, unions must accommodate an ongoing influx of new migrants and the US government must treat workers' associations as allies in immigration enforcement.

Subjects: Immigration, Labor Mobility, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Undocumented Workers
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 9
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Gormley, Alison A., "The Underground Exposed: the United States Corporations' Use of Sweatshops Abroad, and the Abuse of Women", Suffolk Transnational Law Review v. 25 no1 (Winter 2001) p. 109-139

Abstract:
This Note highlights the increased use of global sweatshops by American corporations, which invariably results in exploitation of women. The author traces US corporations as they move abroad in order to make use of “cheapest and most malleable” labor in their quest for higher profits. The article also describes the action taken by United States legislators, trade unions and student activist groups to curtail sweatshop practices of US corporations. It concludes with the suggestion that students, unions and United States join hands with the United Nations and the ILO, so that corporations would not be able to move abroad without facing adverse consequences.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Gospel, Howard & Lockwood, Graeme & Willlman, Paul, "A British Dilemma: Disclosure of Information for Collective Bargaining and Joint Consultation", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 22 (2001) p. 327-349

Abstract:
This article argues that the British state faces a dilemma as it begins to implement European consultation and disclosure rules that require employers to share certain kinds of information and discuss certain decisions with employees. Previously, the British rules on disclosure set a high hurdle for unions to overcome when seeking information. The article describes how the British government has modified existing disclosure rules to conform to EU directives in the areas of health and safety, collective redundancy, transfer of undertakings, and European works councils. Yet the new disclosure requirements raise several difficult issues, including whether the information disclosure requirements apply to collective bargaining, consultation or both; whether consultation and collective bargaining will reinforce or undermine each other; the extent to which the UK must change its labor laws to comply with the EU directive; and whether the practical implementation would be ineffective, as in France, or effective, as in Germany. The author contends that British have not implemented the new disclosure rules very well -- implementing them in an ad hoc fashion, setting inadequate sanctions for firms that break the rules, and allowing firms to use "consultation" to bypass the authority of union officials.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, European Union, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 6
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Graubart, Jonathan, "'Politicizing' a New Breed of 'Legalized' Transnational Political Opportunity Structures: Labor Activists Uses of NAFTA's Citizen-Petition Mechanism", Berkeley Journal of Employment and Labor Law no26 (2005) p. 97-150

Abstract:
This article argues that the citizen-petition mechanism for labor disputes, established by the North American Agreement on Labor Cooperation ("NAALC"), should not be abandoned despite waning enthusiasm. Graubart posits that although the NAALC process is quasi-judicial and produces no binding authority, it is a useful tool for transnational labor reform activists. Through a detailed analysis of the successes and pitfalls of past NAALC petitions involving labor disputes with Honeywell, General Electric, Sony, and other companies, the author explains how and under what conditions activists can use the NAALC petition process to strengthen their position in a dispute with the government. Additionally, he shows how the petition process can provide activists with a broader platform from which they can mobilize wider support for their cause which, in turn, puts greater pressure on their governments.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.), NAFTA/GATT
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 3
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Helfer, Laurence R., "Nonconsensual International Lawmaking", University of Illinois Law Review no1 (2008) p. 71-126

Abstract:
This article discusses nonconsensual international lawmaking-defined as the creation of a binding legal obligation on a member state to a treaty or international organization where the state has not ratified or acceded to the obligation-in the areas of antiterrorism, environmental standards, and human rights, including labor standards. Consensual lawmaking implicates concerns of state participation. Such lawmaking suffers from the problem that goals are diluted through the exercise of negotiation and compromise so that the resulting treaties are weaker and have less enforcement mechanisms than the alternatives. Nonconsensual lawmaking, on the other hand, can trigger "sovereignty costs," i.e. a lessening of a state's ability to govern its territory. The author contends that sovereignty costs do not always arise in antiterrorism or environmental agreements, they are likely in the arena of international human rights. The author argues that states may tolerate a moderate amount of nonconsensual lawmaking in the area of human rights if such lawmaking enlarges a treaty system that already contains consensually adopted amendments and protocols. He cites the European and Inter-American human rights systems as exemplars of this incrementalist dynamic.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Trade Agreements
Newsletter: Vol 7, Issue 9
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || WWW || 
 
Kochan, Thomas A., "Updating American Labor Law: Taking Advantage of a Window of Opportunity", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 28 (2007) p. 101-122

Abstract:
This article is one of many in recent years offering suggestions for reform of U.S. labor law. Much of the article is concerned with reviewing past attempts – both successful and otherwise – at implementing such reforms, including the author's participation as a member of the Clinton-appointed Dunlop Commission of the early 1990s whose recommendations were never adopted. Based on past experiences, the author first offers five conditions for any successful effort to effectuate fundamental changes in U.S. labor law: (1) a significant event or crisis which attracts the attention of the wider public; (2) swift action by the reformers so as not to lose the opportunity; (3) an uncompromising approach; (4) a clear agenda for reform (again, so that time is not wasted studying the issue or giving opponents time to organize opposition); and, (5) a powerful and articulate champion for reform capable of transcending the complex and partisan legislative process and framing the issues as one affecting a broad segment of the public or the country's economic well-being. The author suggests that the United States might be approaching such a "crisis" moment when it will be possible to reform what he considers an "ossified" labor law system. The author advocates that collective bargaining be supplemented with works councils or some similar guaranteed form of workplace representation based on the experience of several European countries. He also advocates a new approach for the enforcement of labor standards that would permit flexible enforcement if the parties have an agreed upon code of conduct that meets or exceeds the minimum legal standards. He also suggests a corresponding reform of the courts to add a special labor division, along the lines of current bankruptcy courts, to ensure greater familiarity and competence among judges called upon to hear compliance and enforcement disputes.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Corporate Codes of Conduct, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 8
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Kolben, Kevin, "Labor Rights as Human Rights?", Virginia Journal of International Law v. 50 (2010) p. 449-484

Abstract:
The labor movement and labor scholars, particularly in the U.S., are increasingly couching labor rights as fundamental human rights in domestic labor law reform efforts and corporate and grassroots organizing campaigns. Their embrace of a human rights discourse is part of a strategy on the part of unions and workers’ rights NGOs to capitalize on its “hegemonic status” both at home and internationally. Kolben argues that the invocation of this discourse and the application of an international human rights legal framework do a disservice to the goals of the labor movement, goals which include strengthening workplace democracy and pursuing economic justice. For example, the human rights model is oriented toward protecting individuals’ rights against state power—not facilitating the empowerment of collectivities in the private employment context. Furthermore, the human rights and labor movements part ways on foundational matters: the former is driven by elites, rather than rank-and-file workers; the former employs law as an end, rather than a means; the former promotes individuals, rather than collectives; and the former is more concerned with charity towards “victims” rather than promoting agency through collective bargaining and direct action. Kolben concludes that at a minimum, labor’s invocation of a human rights frame is ineffective at best, “debilitating” at worst.

Subjects: Labor Rights as Human Rights, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 9, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || PDF || 
 
Kuhn, Peter & Riddell, Chris, "The Long-Term Effects of Unemployment Insurance: Evidence from New Brunswick and Maine 1940-1991", Industrial and Labor Relations Review v. 63 no2 (January 2010) p. 183-204

Abstract:
This article describes a study on unemployment insurance (UI) policies in the bordering regions of the Canadian province of New Brunswick and the United States’ state of Maine between 1940 and 1991. The two regions have similar ethnic makeup, population growth, and average income level but have divergent UI policies. New Brunswick’s UI system is federally-funded, and offered dramatically higher benefits than the US system during the sample period. The study looks to see if the differences in the programs results in different incidence of part-year work, defined as work of 1 to 39 weeks duration during a given year. It finds that in 1990, New Brunswick had 25.6% of working-age men working part year, compared to 12.6% in Maine, a difference that the authors find is largely attributable to the different UI policies. The authors conclude that generous UI programs can lead to greater participation in part-year work, but that its incentive pulls from both the highest (over 40 weeks) and lowest (0 weeks) brackets, resulting in only a modest effect on total labor supply.

Subjects: Comparative Labor Law, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Unemployment Insurance
Newsletter: Vol 10, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Langille, Brian A., "Core Labour Rights - The True Story (Reply to Alston)", European Journal of International Law v. 16 no3 (2005) p. 409-437

Abstract:
This article is a reply to Philip Alston's article, "Core Labour Standards and the Transformation of the International Labour Rights Regime," that appeared in the European Journal of International Law in 2004. Alston argued that the International Labour Organization's (ILO) "core labour standards" undermine the "old ILO regime" in which international labor conventions are created in Geneva , and then ratified on a voluntary basis by the ILO member states. Ratification turns the conventions into binding international treaties with specific reporting obligations and a system of supervisory review. The genesis of the new core labour standards was the ILO's 1998 Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work ("Declaration"), which designated four rights as fundamental and binding, whether members ratified them or not. The Alston piece argued that the core rights are arbitrary, have no coherent conceptual basis, and that they will have a negative impact on international labour rights. In this piece, Languille takes issue with Alston and contends that the articulation of core rights will have a positive pragmatic relationship. Languille further suggests that the Declaration may be the first step in the positive transformation of international labour law.

Subjects: International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 4, Issue 11
Full-text links: || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Lieberwitz, Risa L., "Linking Trade and Labor Standards: Prioritizing the Right of Association", Cornell International Law Journal v. 39 (2006) p. 641-653

Abstract:
Prompted by recent debates over linking bilateral, regional and multilateral trade agreements with internationally recognized labor standards, the author argues that proponents of such linkage have erred in placing their focus on mandating substantive workplace rights in trade agreements. The author argues that the most important demand to raise is the "procedural" right of full freedom of association for workers affected by the global expansion of capital and international trade agreements. She argues that the exclusive focus on substantive rights is doomed to failure because it underestimates "the power of transnational corporations to continue their global expansion and search for untapped cheap labor." An emphasis on freedom of association instead would allow greater flexibility for workers to confront localized conditions and pursue their own demands for substantive workplace rights through collective bargaining. By assisting workers in setting and pursuing their own priorities for improved labor standards, the author argues that a regime protecting freedom of association would encourage economic growth and development by preserving the competitive advantage of countries of the global South within the global division of labor. Additionally, the localized control of workers over their own collective bargaining demands would, the author argues, solve many of the on-site monitoring and enforcement problems that have been idenitified by other efforts to link trade and labor standards. Even where freedom of association is unlikely to be adequately enforced in the short term, the author argues that this approach nonetheless provides a more promising alternative because it invests power in those most affected by globalization, and begins the long-term process of building cross-border alliances among unions and workers, rather than perpetuating the notion that workers' interests are necessarily tied to improving the competitiveness of "their" employer, "their" sector, or "their" country, at the expense of workers elsewhere.

Subjects: Collective Bargaining, Free Trade Agreements, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Trade Agreements, Trade Conditionality
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 5
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Macklem, Patrick, "Labour Law Beyond Borders", Journal of International Economic Law v. 5 no3 (2002) p. 605-645

Abstract:
Flexible forms of transnational production and processes of economic globalization are increasingly challenging the traditional capacity of domestic labour law to promote justice in the world of work. At the same time, three international and transnational modes of regulation are forming beyond the state. First, the International Labour Organization is promoting a set of core labour rights with which all states ought to comply as a matter of international law. Second, numerous institutions and actors are linking international labour rights with trade liberalization initiatives. Third, corporations are increasingly relying on codes of conduct to govern their employment relations. This paper argues that these developments are establishing relatively firm footholds in international law and operate in tandem to provide international legal authority for innovative domestic regulation of transnational corporate activity. Together with more general principles of international human rights law, they authorize a state to require all corporations operating within its jurisdiction and all corporations operating outside its jurisdiction seeking domestic market access to comply with a domestically enforceable code of conduct that enshrines international labour rights. Such a requirement should be contained in legislation that institutionalizes core features of modern legality and extends financial assistance to foreign communities adversely affected by corporate compliance.

Subjects: International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 1, Issue 3
 
Mohammed, Furqan, "Protecting Pakistani Laborers Post-Eighteenth Amendment: Recognizing Rights After the Devolution of Power", Loyola University Chicago International Law Review v. 9 (Spring 2012) p. 265-296

Abstract:
Pakistan has, until recently, been considered a country with relatively progressive labor laws. These labor laws are a result of populist, anti-imperialist uprisings against British employers. Since the middle of the last century, Pakistan’s relatively progressive labor laws were alternately expanded and curtailed by prime ministers eager to respond to either the voting populace or powerful business lobbies. In 2008 Pakistan passed constitutional amendment that shifted many legislative subjects from joint federal and provincial authority to the exclusive authority of the provinces. This amendment could threaten labor protections. The author argues that the Constitution should be interpreted to give federal courts the jurisdiction to enforce labor rights that are granted by the Constitution. He acknowledges that such an interpretation would contrast with previous presidents’ passage of anti-labor laws that contravened the Constitution, but notes that such laws were simply changed by the next president rather than challenged in the Constitutional court. The author urges Pakistani courts to change course, and begin interpreting the Constitution in a more stringent manner and taking up more challenges to labor laws. In addition, the author argues that the new amendment still allows the federal government to implement and uphold rights guaranteed by the ILO Conventions the country has ratified because the state itself, not the individual provinces, is a member of the ILO.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 12, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Mumford, Todd, "Voluntary International Standards: Incorporating 'Fair Trade' within Multilateral Trade Agreements", Southwestern Journal of Law and Trade in the Americas v. 14 (2007) p. 171-192

Abstract:
This article proposes the incorporation into existing multilateral trade agreements, such as the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a uniform and voluntary set of international labor standards, which could be certified by third party nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). The model for this proposal derives from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's adoption of a standardized definition for "organic" food products, which, under the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990, provides a uniform set of standards, which can nonetheless be monitored the certification processes of multiple third party NGOs. The underlying concern of the author is to ensure uniformity in the meaning of "fair trade," so as to prevent a proliferation of competing definitions which may be used by big businesses to evade compliance and ultimately undermine consumer confidence in the integrity of the "fair trade" label. The author points out that such uniform standards are not prohibited under the terms of NAFTA or other multilateral free trade agreements, so long as they do not function as a "technical barrier to trade."

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), NAFTA/GATT, Trade Agreements, Trade Conditionality
Newsletter: Vol 7, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Mundlak, Guy, "De-Territorializing Labor Law", Law & Ethics of Human Rights v. 3 (2009) p. 188-222

Abstract:
The author argues that labor laws heretofore territorial solutions¯ are inadequate for toda's globalized world, where both capital and labor are increasingly mobile. He contends that labor law must b de-territorialize¯ in order to better countcapi's forum shoppi¯ through the unilateral choice of territory and in order to more capably address territorial disparities in pay and working conditions that result from artificial, political borders. Mundlak suggests labor law should take a cue from other fields such as environmental law, where extra-territoriality is more common. Moreover, he suggests that labor rights be more thoroughly integrated into the already de-territorialized regimes of corporate or trade law. Although he acknowledges that the de-territorialization process may upset traditional nationally-focused union and worker advocacy practices, he claims that de-territorialization can create new possibilities for advancing workers' rights through cross-national legislation, cross-border litigation,¯ and codes of conduct.

Subjects: Conflict of Laws, Corporate Accountability, Extraterritorial Application of Law, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 8, Issue 10
 
Murray, Jill, "The Sound of One Hand Clapping? The 'Ratcheting Labour Standards' Proposal and International Labour Law", Australian Journal of Labour Law v. 14 no3 (December 2001) p. 306-332

Abstract:
This article examines the ramifications of a recent proposal for international labor regulation put forward by Charles Sabel, Dara O’Rourke and Archen Fung for "Ratcheting Labor Standards (RLS). The RLS proposal makes the optimistic prediction that upward-pressure through civil society such as through transnational consumer movements can induce multi-corporations to unilaterally raise their labor relations. The author describes the RLS approach and compares it to the traditional conception of international labor regulation as embodied in the International Labor Organization (ILO). The author characterizes the RLS approach as an attempt to find a third way between the polar extremes of inflexible, fixed-rule regulation and a deregulation. The article concludes that the RLS proposal is close to the deregulatory pole in its rejection of transnational, multi-level regulatory instruments of the ILO, and other international agencies and in its reliance instead on business self-regulation. The author is critical of the proposal and argues that because the contemporary political climate is unlikely to create institutional structures to further workers interests, we should not weaken the hard-won transnational structures, particularly the only international rule-making institution in which civil society participates, the ILO.

Subjects: International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 5
 
Ontiveros, Maria L., "Work in the 21st Century - Creating the Social Architecture", University of San Francisco Law Review v. 37 no3 (Spring 2003) p. 511-519

Abstract:
This Article summarizes and builds upon the University of San Francisco Law Review's spring 2003 symposium on creating a social architecture for work in the twenty-first century. Symposium participants discussed the contemporary labor movement in the contexts of the global marketplace, the American labor movement, the relationship between individual employees and employers, and American law schools. Part I discusses the global market place and argues that the international financial structure of multinational corporations must be balanced by a social architecture facilitated by the rule of law to ensure global worker protection. Part II focuses on the American labor movement and discusses two approaches to creating a social architecture that, while different, share similar core values, such as creating dignity for individual workers and recognizing that the work of a human being is not a commodity. Part III discusses the relationship between individual employees and employers and notes the difficulties that non-union employees face in enforcing their workplace rights, highlighting the need for an appropriate forum in which workers can vindicate their rights. Part IV discusses the role of American law schools in the contemporary labor movement, noting a disjuncture between a movement in law schools away from a focus on labor law, even as labor law remains an important focal point for many practicing attorneys.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 11
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Pagnattaro, Marisa Anne, "Enforcing International Labor Standards: The Potential of the Alien Tort Claims Act", Vanderbilt Journal of Transanational Law v. 37 no203 (2004) p. 203-263

Abstract:
This article asks where workers can go for protection of labor standards. In Part I, the author argues that US courts should recognize that the Alien Tort Claims Act (ATCA) includes torts committed in connection with freedom of association, the right to collective bargaining, prohibitions on child labor, and discrimination. Thus, ATCA can be used to enforce core labor rights under the law of nations. Part II sketches ATCA's history and narrates seven major cases, including four brought against multinational corporations by the International Labor Rights Fund (ILRF). Part III shows that foreign workers can hold multinationals liable under ATCA for violating the law of nations. Part IV lists treaties that can be used to constitute law of nations violations in the areas of human and labor rights, extra judicial murder and genocide, torture, kidnapping, slavery, freedom of association, collective bargaining, child labor and discrimination. Part V outlines four challenges to ATCA claims and Part VI gives their counter-defenses. In Part VII, the author argues that free trade will not automatically improve labor rights. While it is admirable that courts have interpreted the law of nations to include general human rights, now they should recognize its torts connected to core labor rights.

Subjects: Alien Torts Claims Act, Case Studies: Industry-Specific, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 7
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
par Kamil, Admed, "International Labor Rights- A Categorical Imperative?", Les Editions Revue de Droit University de Sherbrooke v. 35 (2004) p. 185-145

Abstract:
The author discusses the capacities of the ILO, the WTO and corporate codes of conduct (CCCs) to protect labor rights. The author reviews labor rights debates in international trade law, noting the theory of comparative advantage and differences between more and less developed countries (sections II and III). While the ILO has been criticized as outdated, lacking enforcement power, and US-dominated, it retains international clout and can back labor rights by cooperating with the WTO and CCCs (section IV). Enforceable WTO law is the ultimate goal, but this is unlikely for now because, according to WTO anti-protectionism provisions, products fabricated in different manners cannot receive dissimilar treatment. Also, less developed countries lobby against WTO labor provisions. Thus, the author argues that CCCs are a viable interim strategy (Section IV, E). Corporations favor them because they create consumer markets, represent the privatization of regulation, strengthen management, and are unenforceable by outside agencies. As such, CCCs are substantively toothless, yet to their credit they are as flexible, transnational and international as corporations themselves.Thus, he concludes taht CCCs can supplement the protective capacities of the ILO and WTO such as they are.

Subjects: Corporate Codes of Conduct, International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.), World Trade Organization (WTO)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 6
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Ruiz Cameron, Christopher David, "Law and the Border: Borderline Decisions: Hoffman Plastic Compounds, the New Bracero Program, and the Supreme Court’s Role in Making Federal Labor Policy", UCLA Law Review v. 51 no1 (October 2003) p. 1-34

Abstract:
In this article, the author discusses Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inv. V. NLRB, in which the United States Supreme Court held that an undocumented alien who is illegally fired for exercising her right to join a labor union is not entitled to collect backpay for her employer’s misconduct. The author analyzes the effect that Hoffman will have on undocumented workers in the U.S. Part I explores the rationale underlying the Hoffman decision, noting that the Supreme Court did not display its usual deference to the NLRB’s expertise in interpreting and applying the NLRA. Part II explores three earlier decisions that the Court relied upon, and argues that those decisions did not compel the result reached by the Hoffman majority. Part III criticizes the Supreme Court for usurping Congress’s role in setting federal labor policy.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Undocumented Workers
Newsletter: Vol 3, Issue 5
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Schurtman, Monica, "Los ‘Jonkeados’ and the NAALC: The Autotrim/Customtrim Case and its Implications for Submissions Under the NAFTA Labor Side Agreement", Arizona Journal of International and Comparative Law v. 22 (Summer 2005) p. 291-387

Abstract:
This 10-year history of the first health and safety complaint under the NAFTA labor side agreement demonstrates legal and procedural flaws in the NAFTA Side Agreement (the NAALC), recommends changes in NAFTA labor regulation, and analyzes the limited utility of working for workers’ rights within the NAFTA framework it. The author was personally involved in the process, and provides thick historical detail, including worker quotations. Part II discusses the legal framework of the NAALC. Parts III and IV describe the case and chronicles the workers’ formulation of grievances and their efforts to forge alliances with US and Mexican NGOs. The author describes how workers were shut out of all governmental process, including plant inspections and meetings of company lawyers with a new labor working group. Ultimately, workers’ complaints were never directly addressed, their recommendations about enforcing health and safety standards ignored, and their voice never incorporated into the intergovernmental discussions they prompted. In Section V, the author opines that filing complaints under the NAALC is too costly to be worth the effort, as long as workers are so excluded from the process. Yet she also acknowledges that the process does have gradual effects of norm-building and institutional change. She concludes by advocating that labor activists press for new NAALC interpretations and implementations which are more worker friendly.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.), NAFTA/GATT
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Servais, Jean-Michel, "Universal Labor Standards and National Cultures", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 26 no1 (Fall 2004) p. 35-54

Abstract:
This article discusses the tensions that arise in implementing International Labour Organization (ILO) labor standards in member States due to local cultural variables and economic constraints. The author first explains how the ILO takes cultural and economic concerns into account by incorporating devices such as flexibility clauses and situational recommendations. However, the author concedes that the universal character of international labor standards will nonetheless still give rise to problems when applied to specific states' cultures. He argues that the ILO should proceed flexibility and with sensitivity to local culture in the textual wording of directives and recommendations but not when it comes to monitoring compliance. He reasons that a legal system is only credible if it guarantees that the methods of evaluation are the same for all. The author concludes with suggestions for steps that would lead to an effective execution of international labor standards, including proposals for rules that garner broad support, practical guidelines, and solemn declarations.

Subjects: International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 12, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Shamir, Hila, "A Labor Paradigm for Human Trafficking", UCLA Law Review v. 60 (October 2012) p. 76-136

Abstract:
Recent legislation addressing human trafficking, such as the US Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2000 (TVPA) and the UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons (Protocol), are framed to address the human rights of trafficking victims. The author argues that anti-trafficking statutes framed around human rights are of limited effectiveness because such statutes primarily focus on rehabilitating victims and punishing offenders. This focus is problematic for several reasons: first, the focus is necessarily limited to trafficking and not the breadth of labor exploitation, second, it gives redress only the most severe cases, third, by focusing on the most severe cases it normalizes less severe labor exploitation. The author argues calls for a paradigm shift: she suggests anti-trafficking measures be viewed from a labor framework. A labor framework would empower workers to combat exploitive treatment on their own, and would re-set the balance of power between labor and capital, thus removing the economic incentive in labor exploitation. The author describes five measures for implementing the labor approach: 1) prevent criminalization and deportation of trafficking victims, 2) eliminate binding, or status-dependant labor agreements, 3) reduce recruitment fees and the power of middlemen, 4) guarantee the right to unionize, 5) extend and enforce the application of labor and employment laws to all workers.

Subjects: Forced Labor, Labor Rights as Human Rights, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 12, Issue 6
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Shapiro, Hal S., "A New Liberal Trade Policy Foundation", ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law v. 9 (Spring 2003) p. 431-441

Abstract:
This article examines the liberal position on trade and globalization in the United States. It argues that this position must be retooled to promote growth both at home and abroad in developing countries. First, the author describes both liberal and conservative U.S. approaches to trade, noting the central role that linkage -- tying trade benefits to improved labor and environmental standards -- has played for liberals. Next, the author argues that the liberal trade position is a policy at war with itself, since the quotas and tariffs used to enforce such policies have decidedly illiberal effects, hurting those whom liberals intend to help. At best, United States trade partners, and developing countries in particular, view linkage as a legitimate policy that incidentally minimizes aspects of their comparative advantage in certain sectors. At worst, linkage is viewed as a naked attempt to impose discriminatory and protectionist measures by developed countries against the goods and services of developing countries. Finally, the author argues that trade should be delinked from labor and environmental standards and that affirmative measures, such as reduced corporate taxes in exchange for improved corporate behavior, and the targeted use of subsidies, should be used to advance liberal ideas while enhancing the welfare of the average consumer and the poor.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 2, Issue 12
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Silk, James J & Makonnen, Meron , "Economic Exploitation of Children: Ending Child Labor: A Role for International Human Rights Law?", St. Louis University Public Law Review v. 22 no359 (2003) p. 359-370

Abstract:
This article discusses the recent rise in the use of private actions to prevent child labor. It begins by noting that private enforcement actions are necessary because international legal standards designed to protect children have weak enforcement mechanisms. After explaining the scope and impact of child labor, the authors detail the various international human rights laws that purport to protect children from abusive labor practices. The authors then explore the shift from reliance on public international measures to private actions such as boycotts of products made with child labor and public pressures to induce corporations to adopt codes of conduct. The authors present critiques of using private actions to prompt compliance with labor rights, but conclude that international human rights law has a role to play in ending child labor because it sets the standard by which conduct is measured, regardless of whether pressure to comply is exerted by non-governmental or governmental entities.

Subjects: Child Labor, Corporate Codes of Conduct, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 3, Issue 1
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Smith, Jackie, "Economic Globalization and Labor Rights: Towards Global Solidarity", Notre Dame Journal of Law v. 20 (2006) p. 873-884

Abstract:
This article contrasts one vision of globalization, which emphasizes markets and profit maximization, with another which emphasizes democratic values, international cooperation, and human well-being. The author contends that position of workers and unions has declined because workers in rich countries have supported the purely economic vision of globalization and have "abandon[ed] the value of solidarity in favor of narrowly defined and short-term interests." But the disempowerment of workers has lead to a crisis point, which creates a new possibility for dramatic union revitalization. In order to revitalize, a globally organized labor movement must cooperate with civil society movements, even as the latter must address the concerns of people as workers. She suggests that the World Social Forum is a key arena for unions and civil society to do this collaboration and link their struggles together.

Subjects: Labor Rights as Human Rights, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 9
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Stone, Katherine V.W., "To the Yukon and Beyond: Local Laborers in a Global Labor Market", Journal of Small and Emerging Business Law v. 3 no1 (Summer 1999) p. 93-130

Abstract:
This article explores the possibilities for effective protection of labor rights in the emerging global labor market. It explores existing forms of transnational labor regulation, including both hard regulation, i.e., regulation by state-centered institutions, and soft regulation, i.e., regulation through private actors responding to market forces. The author finds that existing regulatory approaches are inadequate to ensure that the global marketplace will offer adequate labor standards to its global workforce. She proposes new approaches to global labor regulation, approaches that blend hard and soft law by reshaping market forces and embedding them in a regulatory framework that is protective of core labor rights.

Subjects: Corporate Codes of Conduct, European Union, International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.), NAFTA/GATT, Trade Conditionality, World Trade Organization (WTO)
Newsletter: Vol 1, Issue 2
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Stone, Katherine V.W., "Flexibilization, Globalization, and Privitization: Three Challenges to Labor Rights in Our Time", Osgoode Hall Law Journal v. 44 no77 (2006) p. 77-104

Abstract:
Three dynamics are coalescing to reshape labor relations in the 21st century in the United States: They are flexibilization, globalization and privatization. Flexibilization refers to the changing work practices by which firms no longer use internal labor markets or implicitly promise employees lifetime job security, but rather seek flexible employment relations that permit them to increase or diminish their workforce, and reassign and redeploy employees with ease. Globalization refers to the increase in cross-border transactions in the production and marketing of goods and services that facilitates firm relocation to low labor cost countries. And privatization refers to the rise of neo-liberal ideology, the attack on big government and the dismantling of the social safety net that have dominated public policy in the U.S. in recent years. All three of these dynamics have been detrimental to U.S. employment standards and union strength. This paper describes how each of these dynamics has undermined labor rights and then asks, what prospects are there, in light of this environment, for protecting employment rights, re-invigorating unions, and security a social safety net? It concludes that the response to the global threat to labor standards lies in a revival of collective action at the local level. It further concludes that the combined forces of flexibilization, globalization, and privitization make collective action at the local level not only necessary, but also possible.

Subjects: Contingent Work, Flexibilization, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Privatization
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 11
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Taylor, Chantell, "NAFTA, GATT, and the Current Free Trade System: A Dangerous Double Standard for Workers' Rights", Denver Journal of International Law and Policy v. 28 (Fall 2000) p. 401-435

Abstract:
This article contrasts the enforcement mechanisms for protecting corporate and investor rights under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the World Trade Organization/General Agreement on Trades and Tarrifs (WTO/GATT) with those provisions for the enforcement of labor rights in the International Labor Organization (ILO) and the NAFTA side letter on labor issues, known as the North American Agreement on Labor Cooperation (NAALC). NAFTA provides private investors with standing to sue national governments directly, the right to binding arbitration if an investor believes that a government has breached an obligation under NAFTA that caused the investor to incur a loss and provisions for unlimited damages for corporations when they lose money as the result of a federal law that does not comply with NAFTA. The WTO contains similarly strong enforcement mechanisms for corporations against governments, including penalties and trade sanctions. By contrast, the ILO has no coercive enforcement mechanisms while those included in NAALC are extremely limited. Despite hortatory language in the NAALC concerning freedom of association, the right to bargain collectively, the right to strike, the right to minimum employment standards, and so on, NAALC's Ministerial Council can only hear complaints concerning forced labor, equal pay for men and women, worker compensation, and protection of migrant rights. Further, it is only required to respond to disputes in three areas - child labor, minimum wages and occupational health and safety. Even then, the Ministerial Council may only respond if proof exists of a "persistent pattern of failure by the other Party to effectively enforce" its own labor laws. If the Ministerial Council declines to review a matter, then it may be referred to an Evaluation Committee of Experts, whose remedies are limited to "non-adversarial and non-binding recommendations on the issue." The author argues that protecting workers should be equal to dismantling trade barriers and protecting intellectual property, and considers it an "unacceptable evasion of responsible governance to strategically exclude labor issues from the heart of global commerce."

Subjects: Free Trade Agreements, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), NAFTA/GATT, Trade Agreements, Trade Conditionality
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 3
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Thomas, Chantal, "Should the World Trade Organization Incorporate Labor and Environmental Standards?", Washington and Lee Law Review v. 61 (2004) p. 347-403

Abstract:
This article contrasts legislative with judicial modes of linking international trade, environmental and labor law in order to evaluate possibilities for incorporating environmental and labor protections into the WTO. The author explores several Public Choice arguments for not doing so, including arguments that to do so would undermine the legitimacy of the WTO, a deep suspicion of "non-trade" legislation, the problem of enforceability, developing countries' opposition, and the idea that the WTO has a "breaking point" in breadth. Section II reviews extant international labor and environmental regimes and their limited enforceability. Section III examines cases brought before the WTO's Appellate Body in order to address the possibilities and limitations for legislative and judicial measures. Section IV examines the TRIPS (Trade-Related Intellectual Property Rights) Agreement as an example of successful "non-trade" WTO legislation which was possible despite the high costs of lawmaking and its potential threat to WTO legitimacy as an enforceable, focused code. The author concludes ambivalently that while new legislation may be costly and pose challenges to legitimacy, there is much potential for linking environmental and labor codes into trade law.

Subjects: Labor Rights in General (Misc.), World Trade Organization (WTO)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 6
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Torres, Hector R., "Reforming the International Monetary Fund--Why its Legitimacy is at Stake", Journal of International Economic Law v. 10 no3 (2007) p. 443-460

Abstract:
In this article, the author, who is the Alternate Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), identifies and discusses the dynamic by which the IMF pressures less developed countries (LDCs) to lower their labor standards. Ostensibly founded to promote international trade, currency stability, and increased employment and living standards for the citizens of its member states, the IMF operates on a "quotas" system whereby the size of a country's contributions to the Fund determines the amount of influence it has in the decision making and policy of the Fund. The author argues that because wealthier countries have the "right" to contribute more to the Fund, they effectively control it - often to the detriment of the LDCs which are in need of the financial assistance of the Fund. According to the author, the disproportionate power in the IMF held by the rich lender countries means that when the Fund negotiates structural reforms by debtor countries as a condition for lending money, the Fund necessarily demands "reforms" that benefit the richer countries. The author also criticizes the IMF's double standard for enforcing financial vs. labor or employment contracts, and for reflexively "recommending" a lowering of labor standards. Although the IMF has no particular expertise in labor policy matters, it has repeatedly refused requests to consult with the International Labor Organization (ILO) before making such recommendations. Unsurprisingly, many lesser developed countries have adopted defensive protectionist strategies, including bi-lateral or regional agreements, in order to avoid the punitive conditions attached to borrowing IMF funds. The author concludes that if more thoroughgoing reforms are not implemented, the Fund will continue to suffer from ineffectiveness and a lack of credibility because of its unresponsiveness to citizens' concerns and the challenges posed by globalization.

Subjects: Freedom of Association, Labor Rights in General (Misc.), United Nations (UN)
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 11
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || 
 
Toth, Mariann Arany, "The Right To Dignity at Work: Reflections on Article 26 of the Revised European Social Charter", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 29 (2008) p. 275-331

Abstract:
This article explores the emergence, contours, and impact of the right to dignity at work contained in Article Twenty-six of the Revised European Social Charter. It identifies modern conceptualizations of dignity at work in current legal scholarship and describes the historical development of the concept in Article Twenty-six. The author outlines the nature and content of this right, highlighting the ambiguities of Article Twenty-six’s right to dignity at work in light of potentially conflicting contractual obligations of the parties. The author then assesses the affect of Article Twenty-six’s right to dignity at work on the protection of European workers’ non-economic interests. The article concludes that although the conceptualization of Article Twenty-six’s right to dignity at work is narrow, it is nonetheless a significant step towards protecting workers’ non-economic interests in respect and dignity on the job.

Subjects: European Social Charter, European Union, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 7, Issue 5
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Trubek, David, "The Emergence of Transnational Labor Law", American Journal of International Law v. 100 (2006) p. 725-735

Abstract:
This essay reviews recent books by Bob Hepple, Philip Alston, and Kimberly Elliot & Richard Freeman that address the need for a more effective transnational system of institutional protections to enforce worker rights and raise labor standards in an increasingly global economy. According to Trubek, all of the books are pluralist in their outlook and embody a new “transnational vision” one that relies on both “hard” and “soft” enforcement measures, public and private norms, and various levels of governance, including, where necessary, international financial institutions such as the World Trade Organization and regional trade pacts to create minimal labor standards. However, despite their convergence, Trubek points out that there are numerous issues about which these leading proponents of transnationalism disagree. Areas of disagreement include such fundamental issues as: whether labor standards can promote growth and development; whether globalization necessarily entails a “race to the bottom” with respect to labor standards; the proper balance between “hard” enforcement mechanisms, such as trade sanctions, and “softer” approaches, such as private codes of conduct, publicity campaigns and calls for consumer boycotts; the future role (if any) of the United Nations in setting and enforcing international labor standards; and the potential for the European Union, the proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas and other regional trade pacts to provide the same level of protection to workers rights that they currently afford to international investments and intellectual property rights. While Trubek endorses the transnationalist project, he suggests that transnationalist scholars need to devote more attention to the specific strategies and institutions necessary to construct an effective system of global labor standards.

Subjects: International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights in General (Misc.), Trade Agreements
Newsletter: Vol 6, Issue 2
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Vigneau, Christophe, "Comparative Labor and Employment Law and Policy in the Next Quarter Century: Labor Law Between Changes and Continuity", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 25 (Fall 2003) p. 129-141

Abstract:
This article predicts the future of labor law by analyzing the field’s “glorified past” and “troubled present.” In Part I, the author outlines the history of labor law in France. The author emphasizes that the field emerged through statutory law, to protect the worker in the employment relationship and to improve working conditions. In Part II, the author describes how the perception and the content of labor law have changed in present times. Specifically, the author argues that labor law reforms are no longer driven by the desire to improve the employee’s work life, but by the employer’s demand for flexible labor. Additionally, the author notes that the prominence of collective agreements as the source of French labor law promotes deregulation. In Part III, the author identifies particular challenges that labor law will face in the following decades: monitoring, organizing and moderating the effects of globalization; balancing the employer’s need for a flexible work force with the employee’s need for security; and guaranteeing and enforcing minimum labor standards, fundamental labor rights, and social rights for every individual.

Subjects: Case Studies: Country-Specific, European Union, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 4, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Visser, Jelle, "More Holes in the Bucket: Twenty Years of European Integration and Organized Labor", Comparative Labor Law & Policy Journal v. 26 (Summer 2005) p. 477-521

Abstract:
This article seeks to answer the question of whether the role of intermediaries such as labor unions will be diminished or eliminated as the European Union continues to adapt to a globalized economy. The first section examines how changes in the labor market (e.g., decentralization of the workplace, heterogeneity of society), and diversification of employment statuses (e.g., temporary, short-term) have led to a new focus on choice by the individual worker and the firm, as opposed to equality in forming labor regulation. The second section explores the current status of labor unions by looking at their density (proportion of members), presence (proportion of workplaces where unions present), coverage (proportion of workplaces whose terms of employment influenced by collective bargaining agreements), and representation (recognition and presence). The author finds that although there has been a general decrease in density and presence, coverage and representation have remained stable. He argues that this shows that there is government as well as public support of unionism. The third section looks at how international competition has led Europe to customize labor regulations by allowing Member States, firms, and individuals to opt-out of common minimum standards. The author queries why international coordination between labor unions is not an adequate method of countering this trend. He concludes that the opt-out option is based on a new partnership approach that leaves labor unions out of the equation, to the detriment of all parties involved. The last section analyzes the limits of the current practice of 'voluntary' agreements and guidelines based on public recommendations and a consensus on 'best practice,' and questions whether these non-binding methods have any effect at all. The article concludes that labor union in the EU have been weakened as labor regulation has become less collective as well as less ambitious.

Subjects: Collective Bargaining, Contingent Work, European Union, Extraterritorial Application of Law, Labor Mobility, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 5, Issue 5
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || LEXIS-NEXIS || 
 
Weiss, Marley S., "Ruminations on the Past, Present, and Future of International Labor Standards: Empowering Law in the Brave New Economic World", The Good Society v. 16 no2 (2007) p. 73-81

Abstract:
This article provides an overview of the ILO and assesses its efficacy in a world where social, economic, and political conditions are remaking international legal regimes. The author discusses the ILO rule-making structure, ratification and implementation process, and the substance of its standards to date. She notes that while the ILO has successfully induced compliance by member states, promoted the adoption of positive domestic law, and influenced the incorporation of labor rights norms into international human rights instruments, its effectiveness has waned since the mid-1990s, particularly with regard to the enforcement of standards. Despite its institutional limitations, Weiss maintains that in some places, a "decentered network" of actors-international, national, public, and private-has successfully pressured employers and state governments to observe the substance of the fundamental ILO standards of freedom of association, forced labor, nondiscrimination, and child labor. However, Weiss cautions that such a fragmented approach to international labor standards could further smaller-scale agreements rather than effective multi-lateral ones, thereby weakening, rather than strengthening, international labor standards.

Subjects: International Labour Organization (ILO), Labor Rights as Human Rights, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 8, Issue 2
 
Zumbansen, Peter, "The Parallel Worlds of Corporate Governance and Labor Law", Indiana Journal of Global Legal Studies v. 13 (Winter 2006) p. 261-301

Abstract:
The author applies the lens of transnational law (TL)-a body of norms and a methodological approach to the study of legal regulatory systems throughout the world-to the area of corporate governance. Zumbansen argues that TL captures the "hybridized" mix of "hard" and "soft" regulations that characterizes corporate governance rule-making in the area of labor regulation in the twenty-first century global economy. Part I argues that the separate worlds of corporate and labor law are in fact parallel, in that both are affected by the same "denationalization of societal activity" that has led to a decline in state-based law and a rise in the number of foreign and transnational "norms-producers," both public and private. Zumbansen criticizes self-regulation mechanisms, such as codes of conduct, through the TL rubric, finding them lacking accountability. Part II describes the emergence of TL and discusses whether constitutionalizing TL can afford greater protection for core labor standards. The author claims that TL is positioned to address the magnitude of regulatory challenges inherent in a globalized labor market. He also contends that moving the analysis beyond the realm of the nation-state can help scholars assess the layers of regulations that govern both "regulated and self-regulating" firms.

Subjects: Conflict of Laws, Corporate Accountability, Corporate Codes of Conduct, Labor Rights in General (Misc.)
Newsletter: Vol 8, Issue 4
Full-text links: || WESTLAW || WWW ||