Posts Tagged ‘socially responsible business’

Labor-management partnerships: The seeds of success in the green economy

Abigail Paris serves as Program Assistant for the Socially Responsible Business Program.

Flambeau River PapersToday is Earth Day—a day to reflect on the importance and value of the natural environment.  Started more than 40 years ago in the United States, Earth Day is now celebrated in over 175 countries. It also serves as a time to take note of year-round environmental stewardship. In the 2010 edition of our annual Labor Day List: Partnerships that Work, we did just that.

The eight businesses featured in the report are leaders in the green industry, in terms of both environmental sustainability and labor-management partnerships. Litecontrol manufactured the first architectural lighting systems to be Cradle to Cradle™ certified. Gerding Edlen Development led the first LEED-Platinum certified renovation of a building on the National Register of Historic Places. McGough Construction built the first office building in Minnesota to be certified LEED Platinum. Flambeau River Papers will be the first pulp and paper mill in North America to go fossil fuel free by using a biofuel plant that turns wood byproducts into green diesel fuel to power the mills.

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One hundred years after the Triangle Shirtwaist fire, worker safety still paramount

This week marks the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist fire. Workers and communities across the country honor the memory of the 146 women and children who perished as a result of locked doors and employer negligence. In 1911 outrage toward such callous disregard for workers galvanized Americans to press for better working conditions, and today, the 100th anniversary gives us an opportunity to reflect on the evolution of workplace safety. Read more »


Here’s a bright idea: Keep profit-making jobs in America

The union workers who make Philips lighting fixtures in Sparta, Tennessee, have been doing things right for over 40 years. In fact, their plant was named one of North America’s 10 best by Industry Week Magazine in 2009—and even won Philips’ own “lean” manufacturing award last fall.

But now Philips Global CEO Gerard Kleisterlee wants to send those good, American jobs to Mexico—leaving 275 workers jobless and an entire community devastated. Read more »


Despite economic climate, CEO compensation still on the rise

In recent weeks, anti-union politicians across the country have been attacking workers’ rights in the name of mustering up funds to curb state deficits. But for all their talk of shared sacrifice and merit-based pay, they seem to have overlooked a reality that working families know all too well. Read more »


Labor-management partnerships help Europe weather the economic storm

Abigail Paris serves as Program Assistant for the Socially Responsible Business Program.

In 2008, a financial meltdown triggered a deep recession, arguably the deepest recession to face the European Union (EU). Unlike in many other places in the world, the EU—through the collaboration of its employers, unions and governments—was able to avoid sky rocketing unemployment and emerge from the recession relatively unscathed. On March 3, 2010, the European Commission released a report, entitled Industrial Relations in Europe 2010, which highlighted how labor-management partnerships helped the EU adapt to the post-recession world.

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Today only: Buy a book, help a worker!

Powell's BooksHere in the American Rights at Work office, three things get us going: coffee, helping workers, and a great book. While you’ll have to find your own caffeine fix, we’ve found a way to buy books at an affordable price and help workers out at the same time!
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Green jobs must be good jobs

There’s a lot of hype about “going green.” But we must ensure that as we pursue alternative energy and sustainability we are protecting our greatest resource: America’s workers.

This year’s Good Jobs Green Jobs National Conference explored ways to incorporate workers’ rights into green initiatives. At the conference, American Rights at Work hosted two panels, highlighting employee protection within the agriculture and construction industries.

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Time for business schools to get down to business on workers’ rights

Kara Kahley is American Rights at Work’s Socially Responsible Business Intern.

It has been said that “Doing well by doing good” is the new M.O. of the business world.  Companies are realizing that there’s more to business than profit, and management education is beginning to reflect that perspective.

Traditionally, management education has focused primarily on creating shareholder value, but this too is changing. Social responsibility was once a trendy offering only at certain schools, but it is now becoming mainstream.  The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), the premiere accrediting body for management education, has begun to push for more emphasis on ethics and sustainability in its schools’ programs.  Additionally, the presence of Net Impact, a student organization for corporate social responsibility, is rapidly expanding. Read more »


2010: A year-end roundup

The American Rights at Work blog team is about to close up shop for the holidays. But before we do, here’s a roundup of some of our favorite posts from 2010, from most to least recent. Happy Holidays! Read more »


Just in time for the holidays: support workers’ rights while you shop

Black Friday may be over, but for those of us too lazy to get up at the crack of dawn and contend with droves of frenzied deal-seekers, holiday shopping is just getting started. With all the options out there, not to mention a few seriously picky folks on my gift list, I’ve been feeling a bit overwhelmed.

So I was thrilled to hear that the International Labor Rights Forum (ILRF) and the Not For Sale Campaign (NFSC) have teamed up to help make the process simpler—and socially responsible. The two organizations have updated the site, which rates companies from “A” to “F” based on their workers’ rights record. Read more »