Strong Labor Commitments under the Agreement

Strong Labor Commitments under the Agreement

• To adopt and maintain in domestic law the five fundamental labor rights as stated in the 1998 International Labor Organization (ILO) Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. These rights are:

o Freedom of association – the right to form and join a union;

o Collective bargaining – the right for workers to negotiate better conditions together;

o Elimination of all forms of compulsory or forced labor;

o Effective abolition of child labor and a prohibition on the worst forms of child labor; and

o Elimination of employment and occupation discrimination based on gender, race, or other factors.

• Not to waive or otherwise fail to apply labor laws in a manner affecting trade and investment.

• To effectively enforce fundamental labor rights, as well as minimum wage, hours of work, and occupational safety and health laws.

• To guarantee workers and employers access to tribunals where rights can be enforced and to ensure that proceedings before those tribunals are fair, equitable, and transparent.

• To establish procedures that allow members of the public to raise concerns directly with the two governments, which the governments must review and consider.

• To the same level of dispute settlement accountability for meeting labor obligations as for meeting commercial obligations. Available remedies for violations of labor commitments will include trade sanctions and fines.

• To improve labor standards and to cooperate on matters including labor inspection systems, social assistance programs, occupational safety and health, and labor relations.