Multinationals operating in India to be called to investigate where bricks come from
UK construction firms working in India are to be targeted in an effort to improve the conditions of brick workers in the country.
Campaigners claim that terrible and often illegal working conditions are found at Indian brick kilns including 12-18 hour days and use of child labour with the bricks produced used to construct offices and factories as well as homes in the country’s booming economy.
Now, an international alliance of trade unions, Union Solidarity International (USI), is launching a campaign - Blood Bricks - with the aim of forcing companies to carry out checks.
Andrew Brady, director of global trade union alliance Union Solidarity International, said the campaign, to be launched next week, would target multinational construction firms, including UK firms, working in the Indian construction market.
Brady said that the 2006 Companies Act as well as international law gave companies including architects, engineers and other consultants, a responsibility to check on the human rights implications of their work.
He said: “We want to challenge the companies involved in India to ensure they are vigorously checking whether their supply chains are free of what we’re calling ‘blood bricks’.”
“They should be taking steps to ensure there are no human rights abuses and we want to ensure they’re complying with UK law as well as Indian law,” he added.