Brussels, 14 November 2011 (ITUC OnLine): A new ITUC report on core labour standards in Ecuador, published on the occasion of the World Trade Organisation (WTO)’s review of Ecuador’s trade policies, reveals grave problems with trade union rights and discrimination and several other violations of labour rights.
Ecuadorian workers enjoy only limited rights to organise, collectively bargain and strike. Employers make use of practices such as sub-contracting and setting up employer-controlled associations to further weaken workers’ bargaining power.
Persons of indigenous and Afro-Ecuadorian origin face discrimination in employment, particularly in hiring. Gender discrimination is also present: the report finds a high level of vertical segregation in the social and health-care services, public administration, municipal authorities and provincial councils, in which women are employed in the lowest paid categories.
The report shows that, although the government makes some effort to eliminate child labour, there are still 367,000 children between 5 and 14 years of age working illegally. Furthermore forced prostitution, forced beggary and involuntary domestic servitude occur, particularly afflicting children.
The ITUC represents 175 million workers in 308 affiliated national organisations from 153 countries and territories.
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