Los derechos humanos son derechos sindicales

¿Tienen los derechos humanos relación con el poder sindical? ¿Van los dos de la mano en todo el mundo? Durante casi dos siglos la respuesta casi siempre fue un rotundo "¡Sí!" En todos los continentes, el crecimiento de las organizaciones de trabajadores parecía anunciar la emancipación de la gente común y el fin de sus opresores.

Hoy vivimos en una era de derechos humanos globales. A los criminales de guerra se les enjuicia en La Haya. Los derechos de las mujeres están en la agenda social y política de Medio Oriente. Desde Birmania hasta Nigeria, el mundo presta particular atención a los derechos de libertad de expresión de los disidentes políticos. Miles de ONG's (Organizaciones No Gubernamentales) denuncian las violaciones a los derechos humanos y promueven estándares sociales, económicos y legales orientados a beneficiar a quienes trabajan en condiciones difíciles en las fábricas de los países pobres.

En todo el mundo, las corporaciones y asociaciones industriales han adoptado alrededor de 182 códigos de conducta laborales y de derechos humanos. Ante las presiones de grupos como el Consorcio de Derechos de los Trabajadores y la Iniciativa para el Comercio Etico, algunas corporaciones se han comprometido a pagar salarios que permitan vivir, abrir sus fábricas a inspecciones e incluso dar a los empleados una voz en el lugar de trabajo. Reebok, la compañía multinacional de productos deportivos, anuncia que su código corporativo está "basado en los principios centrales" de la Declaración Universal de los Derechos Humanos de la ONU. La empresa comercializa sus balones de futbol y otros bienes con una etiqueta que dice "Garantizado: hecho sin mano de obra infantil".

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