Workers & Human Rights

Respect for the clearly enshrined international legal rights afforded to all workers is at the foundation of democratic, economic, and social development. Solidarity Center programs promote the use of international human rights treaty instruments in support of worker rights.

UN, United Nations, freedom of association, human rights, unions, Solidarity Center

Workers rights—and the freedom to form unions and freely assemble—are key to achieving human rights, according to a new report by UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association Maina Kiai. The Solidarity Center is among organizations contributing to the research. Find out more.In an economic environment that prioritizes growth, ensuring human and worker rights is a major challenge. Strong trade unions must work to ensure that workers are able to exercise their full spectrum of rights, including International Labor Organization (ILO) Core Labor Standards. Trade unions have the unique ability to raise awareness of worker rights in the workplace, and to represent their workers by advocating for their rights at the national policy level.

Rule of law is the principle that a government exercises its authority in accordance with clear, objective, publicly disclosed laws, adopted and enforced through established procedures and enshrined in internationally recognized standards. It is the foundation of a democratic society—the means by which people protect their liberty in a society of equals and the means by which workers protect their rights. All workers deserve decent jobs, where they are treated with respect and dignity and paid a living wage.

Workers around the world are standing up for their rights and forming unions to make life better for themselves and their families. The Solidarity Center serves as a worldwide advocate for union activists, defending worker rights, administering training programs for organizing, sharing information with unionists, and providing support for struggling unions.

Photo Essay

South Africa, farm worker, Solidarity Center, unions


In South Africa and around the world, farm workers are joining unions and associations to win rights on the job. See more.