U.S. Department of State
Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor
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The Office of International Labor Affairs promotes the rights of workers throughout the world. The Office seeks to ensure that all workers can exercise their rights in the workplace and thus share in the prosperity of the global economy. To this end, the Office:
The International Labor Affairs Office seeks to ensure that U.S. goals of expanded exports, open markets, global growth, and economic development will proceed with fair treatment of workers in all countries. Such economic progress, coupled with respect for the fundamental rights of workers, will strengthen democratic development, foster the growth of consumer markets, and provide a more stable environment for civil society and the promotion of human rights.
The Office promotes workers' rights and interests overseas through cooperation with the U.S. Departments of Labor, Treasury, and Commerce; the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Agency for International Development, and the National Economic Council, among others. It also cooperates closely with U.S. organized labor, NGOs with an expertise in labor issues, and with corporations.
The International Labor Affairs Office is administering a $4 million "anti-sweatshop initiative," to fund the development of and research into approaches and mechanisms to combat sweatshop labor in overseas factories that produce for the U.S. market.
The Office also provides support to the "Advisory Committee on Labor Diplomacy," which advises the President and the Secretary of State on how to strengthen the labor function at the State Department.
The Office is a principal channel of communication between organized labor in the United States and the Department of State. [More on Mission Statement]
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