26 May 2014

Fiji among worst for workers' rights

12:30 pm on 26 May 2014

A newly released global index on workers rights ranks Fiji among the world's worst countries for workers.

The International Trades Union Congress Global Rights Index ranks 139 countries with a score of one to five plus on how they protect workers in law and in practice.

The worst rating - five plus - goes to eight countries where the rule of law has completely broken down, including Somalia, Libya and the Central African Republic.

Fiji is among 24 countries with the second worst rating alongside Bangladesh, China, Egypt and India.

The index describes countries with this rating as having legislation which may spell out certain rights but workers have effectively no access to them, leaving them exposed to autocratic regimes and unfair labour practices.

No other Pacific Island country features in the ranking but Australia scored three and New Zealand two.

The body says the results show almost every country can improve its treatment of workers with only Denmark receiving a perfect score of zero for respecting all 97 indicators of workers' fundamental rights.