Workers Rights for All

In Uncategorized on September 26, 2012 at 7:27 pm

Every week we see on the news “Big Corporation Union Workers Strike!”  This is not new news to us.

Workers’ Rights has been a hot topic around the world in history and in today’s society. It is required by law that legal rights dealing with labor relations between workers and their employers are giving to all employees.  In a simpler definition, it is illegal to take away Workers’ Rights, discriminate workers, and workers are allowed to form unions.  We have heard of many situations where there has been discrimination in the workplace, including:

  • Religion
  • Origin
  • Race
  • Gender
  • Sexual origin
  • Pregnancy
  • Age
  • Disability

In the video clip from Desperate Housewives, a workplace dilemma is presented to the characters when a female employee is not giving a work related opportunity because she is pregnant.

Workers’ Rights issues have not just been an ongoing debate in the U.S., but are a world issue.  The UN and The Convention on Domestic Workers have been working to help people in all living conditions “around the world who care for families and households have the same basic labour rights as other employees”(un.org).  The Convention on Domestic Workers wants to give workers “reasonable working hours, weekly rest of at least 24 consecutive hours, and the right to freedom of association and collective bargaining.”  The organizations haven put much thought and effort into ensuring these people have a just working situation with flexibility.  The groups have set a goal to put their plans into action by next year.

I feel that Workers’ Rights are very important to society today especially for women because we have worked hard to be considered equal to men and that was a huge accomplishment for us.  If all workers receive fair rights and are not discriminated because of gender, race, or other factors, that would be an amazing improvement.  Ideally, by working to create better rights for workers would end tension between the employer-employee relationship and create a lesser need for union workers to go on strike.

Other sources used:



  1. This is a very thought out blog post with excellent points. I completely agree with everything you state in this post and really enjoyed reading it. I feel these are very pressing issues especially in the economic resession we are in today. I think it would be interesting to expand on other workers rights more than just womens rights.

    • Thank you so much for finding an interest in my blog post! I absolutely agree it would be interesting to focus on the CIW and other larger issues within Workers’ Rights

  2. Many times in the media I have heard the chant, “Workers united can never be defeated.” It was a rallying call but in these economic times I sometimes see rights being lost in the name of economic necessity.

    An example here in Australia… In the state of Queensland, a new conservative government was elected on the platform of bringing their state budget into surplus. To do so initially 4000 public service jobs are to go with a planned total of 14,000. According to the media, there had been plans for 20,000 but public backlash saw the number reduced. The state Premier (equivalent to a Governor) assured the state this would benefit all Queenslanders. The obvious question would be how such a move had benefited the 14,000 who lose a job?

    Another post on this blog dealt with globalisation and was an interesting read. https://osgglobalissues.wordpress.com/2012/09/26/globalizationfriend-or-foe/#comments

    Globalisation has the ability to raise the standards of living of workers in poorer countries but also means workers in other countries might lose their jobs or conditions in order to compete at the global level. I agree with you on the need to have a reasonable standard of worker’s rights. The expansion of the global marketplace must have a consensus on achieving these reasonable standards. It seems the U.N. would be the obvious body to oversee the achievement of such standards but it would first take international agreement if this body was able to have any real influence.

    Just some thoughts from someone who enjoyed reading your post.

    Teacher (retired), N.S.W., Australia

    • Wow! Thank you so much for your insight! I agree that is it very interesting to see how Globalization and Workers’ Rights can affect countries around the world some in harmful ways and sometime in helpful ways. I’m glad you enjoyed my post!

  3. Carolyn,
    I really enjoyed your post and the focus on the ongoing struggle with working rights. I definitely agree with you that we have to reach a point where all women are equal. Once we reach that point, we will also have to make sure that other problems are addressed and that all people get a good working environment. What are your feelings on what should come after women are equal to men?
    Thank you so much!

    • Hi Sarayu,
      Thank you so much for seeing my post! As you may notice, I am a bit of a feminist! I feel that after women are 100% equal to men without any conflict or issues, there should equal positions with equal pay for women and men. Women have worked hard to get their rights and become close to having equal abilities and rights as men and we have accomplished that so far. The best example of equality of men and women would be Hilary Clinton because she is a great women’s activist role model where she is able to make decisions and wise choices without the crutch of a man to help her along. For men and women to be equal would be a huge accomplishment and I would hope that would lead to more peace within the U.S. as well as globally.
      Thanks for reading my post!

  4. Hi,

    I agree that discrimination in the workplace is a large issue worldwide. It was interesting to me how many types of people are discriminated against. I agree that it would be a huge improvement to have everyone get equal rights, but I’m wondering how you think the world is doing on this topic? Where are there still areas that need improvement? Also, I’m wondering what you think the effects are of workers going on strike. I’d love to hear what you think.


    • Hi Carolyn,
      Thank you for taking the time to read my post and have so many insightful questions on my specific thoughts on topics i touched upon. I feel that overall, the world is not close to having equal rights for all, especially in developing countries such as Thailand and many Middle East, and African countries have been having a difficult time with equality for workers and in general. In my course, we read an excerpt from Half the Sky by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn that tells the story of a girl who was tricked and forced into prostitution in Thailand when she went there from Cambodia. She tried to escape but she couldn’t. I feel these are the areas that need the most improvement and help to give people the equal rights they deserve. To the other topic of my thoughts on workers going on strike is very indecisive. I feel that labor unions organize these strikes because they find that they are receiving unfair treatment and they usually have points to back up their protest or strike. The more effort and time they put into the strike and refusing to go back until they get what they want shows how persuasive and how they are able to take control. At the same time, many unions or people go on strike to just been seen or heard, but not for a specific reason. If you have a valid reason or argument to go on strike for your rights then I feel you should because you should also put in time and effort into things that are important to you. But if you do not have a strong reason to go on strike, I feel it is pointless and you will not accomplish anything except some attention.
      I enjoyed responded to your questions!
      Thanks so much!

      • Hi Carolyn,

        Thanks for your response! The story you told was very compelling, and I would agree that the world still has a long way to go in terms of women’s rights in developing countries. Women definitely deserve the same rights as men, but most of the world has not realized this yet. I think that if everyone could be passionate about standing up for their beliefs, then maybe the discriminators would recognize how unfair they were being. However, I don’t believe that being passionate about your beliefs will surely get others to believe them. It requires those who are discriminating against you to take a chance to listen to what you are saying. I agree with what you said about having a “strong reason” to go on strike, because for a strike to be effective, the people in power have to recognize that the cause of the strike is legitimate, and that it is necessary to make a change. Thanks for your response!


  5. Hi,

    In reading this post, I agree with most of what you say. However, at what point is there a limit to the right workers get? How do you balance economics with all this?

    • Hi there,
      I feel that most workers understand there is a limit to their rights and they know what their limits are for each position they hold. I am going to use examples that may not apply to every scenario, but will hopefully help you understand my view on Workers’ Rights. As a worker who wants their rights, it would not be worth it to fight or go on strike if you are asking for in total 4 weeks break, but instead to ask for shorter days. I feel that if labor unions understand how to fight for the important things will be better for all sides of the situation because the employers will hopefully be more reasonable and negotiable if the workers have a just reason for going on strike. When bringing economics into play makes the whole topic a little more confusing and to be honest I am not sure how to answer that without writing a whole other post about its affects.
      I hope I was able to answer at least the first question, but I think I now have my next post topic!

  6. I enjoyed reading your blog on “Workers Rights for All”. It is true that Workers’ Rights have been a hot topic around the world for many years. Being an older student and a female, I have gone thru a little bite of it myself. I think it is wonderful that you are standing up for equal rights.

    • Hi Pamela!

      Thanks for reading my post. I agree that this is an important topic in current events, but it has not always received the attention it deserves. Thats really interesting that you have experienced this first hand and people like you are those who can share the importance of Workers’ Rights!

      Thanks, Carolyn

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