Norway to Introduce Ethics Act for Improving Working Conditions in Other Countries

Norwegian environmental organization, Framtiden i våre hender also supports the case.

The organization wants the creation of an ethical legal framework that provides consumers right to information about working conditions under which consumed goods are produced.

“When you buy a t-shirt, the clothing brand must be legally required to provide information about whether the workers who produce it get a decent wage, have the right to organize themselves, or whether they have adequate safety equipment and a healthy working environment”, writes Framtiden i våre hender .

The proposed Ethics Act aims to increase transparency about the working conditions in production countries and to help initiate processes that improve conditions for workers. Today companies themselves decide how much information they want to share with consumers. Transparency of supplier lists in the textile industry has proven to be a power of improvement and change. When one has access to information about the factories, businesses will need to prioritize efforts to improve production conditions of their suppliers, states the organziation.

This will also make it easier for consumers to make choices that will strengthen efforts to ensure human and worker rights.

Goods that are classified as high-risk products by Agency for Public Management and eGovernment (Difi), such as textiles, uniforms, shoes, furniture, coffee, tea, cocoa and toys are proposed to be included in the frame of the ethics act.

The law will require private businesses and public authorities to answer questions about the circumstances of its own suppliers.

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