World Refugee Day: Collective Action to Protect Refugees from Labour Abuses


We are currently witnessing the highest number of displaced people on record, according to the UNHCR. By the end of 2017, 68.5 million people around the world (about the same population as the UK) had been forcibly displaced. Of those people, 25.4 million are refugees fleeing persecution, war, or violence.

As the world confronts one of its biggest humanitarian crises, on this World Refugee Day businesses stand together in their commitment to protect these vulnerable populations.

Turkey is on the front line of a refugee crisis. The civil war in Syria has entered its seventh year and 2.9 million Syrians remain in Turkey, where their precarious status has heightened the risk of exploitation. Turkey is the third largest sourcing country for amfori members, who continue to express deep concerns about potential labour abuses and remain firmly committed to taking the necessary action to remediate them within their supply chains.

amfori strives to support our members build more sustainable supply chains, and helping them address this challenge has been and will continue to be one of our main priorities. Following the development of a guidance document on Syrian nationals working in Turkish supply chains, and the delivery of tailored training for companies and their local business partners, amfori has also brought together a broad range of international stakeholders to discuss joint solutions and create a road map for collective action. The Unleash Opportunity Conference 2018 also stressed the global responsibility to protect migrant workers.

Beyond our efforts in Turkey, we have also joined forces with the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), the Thai government and other partners across the world to protect migrant workers rights in supply chains in key sourcing countries for amfori members, such as China, Bangladesh and Thailand.

As global challenges such as climate change, economic, social and political instability intensify, they will continue to impact the movement of people and, subsequently, businesses’ supply chains. As the leading global association for open and sustainable trade, amfori will continue to facilitate dialogue with stakeholders across the world to leverage businesses’ efforts to tackle the challenges related to the global refugee and migration crisis.

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