Role of NGO’s and International agencies in CSR :
Ans. Non- Governmental organization (NGO’s) are private voluntary organizations, not for profits that function as “Moral Entrepreneurs” selling ethical ideals and standards. They have played major role in solving social and environmental issues from driving inter government negotiations, to regulation of hazards waste and elimination of slavery. NGO’s today have begun to shift their focus on powerful Transnational Corporation (TNC) due to perceived lack of social and environmental accountability of TNC’s under existing laws.
International NGO’s have a stories dating back to at least 1839, and play an important role in the anti- slavery movement and the movement for women’s suffrage. However, the phrase ‘Non-Governmental Organization’ came into use with the establishment of the United Nations organization in 1945 with provisions in articles in 71 of chapter 10 of the UN charter for a consultative role for organization which are neither governments nor member states.
Globalization during the 20th century gave rise to the importance of NGO’s. Many problems could not be solved within a nation. International treaties and International organization such as WTO where centered mainly on the interest of capitalist enterprise. In an attempt counter balance to this trends, NGO’s have developed to emphasize humanitarian issues, developmental aid and sustainable development. NGO’s can be of two types- Operational and Advocacy NGO’s.
However, Apart from NGO’s other players have increasingly become involve in the development of CSR. A member of Inter Governmental Organization (IGO’s) also address this issues of CSR-among these the UN industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the UN Development Program (UNDP), the UN Commission of Human Rights (UNCHR), and the World bank, some of which are participating in the UN Global Compact.
Another important international initiative was taken by the International Standardization Organization (ISO) to develop standards for social responsibility under the name of ISO 26200. The UN global compact and the ISO initiative confirm the increasing importance of CSR internationally and have also given a status of legitimacy to CSR.
CSR and Sustainable Development : In the past, the role of a corporate has been understood in terms of a commercial business paradigm of thinking that focuses purely on economic parameters of success. However, Over the past few decades, thanks to globalization and pressing ecological issues, the perception of the role of a corporate has undergone a sea change. Stakeholders today are redefining the role of corporate, taking into account the corporate responsibility beyond economic performance-its role towards social and environment. A corporate social responsibility is really about building sustainable businesses.
CSR : within the organization
Work Atmosphere: Health and Productivity :
Every employer must treat employees with respect and provide them with a work atmosphere that is safe, secure and healthy, if the firm wants to experience improved productivity. Employees provide the know-how, innovation and customer- service necessary for all business. Therefore a company’s success depends on the productivity and commitment of its employees.
Some of the issues to be considered under health & productivity at the work place are :
- The company must comply with all rules and regulations applicable regarding working conditions.
- The company must ensure a safe and healthy work place environment and appoint a senior management person to implement health and safety requirements.
- The company must identify hazards associated with its business activities and find ways to mitigate them. Systems must be in place to detect, avoid or respond to even potential threats to the health and safety of employees.
- The company must provide training to employees on a regular basis regarding effective health and safety instructions ( Particularly job- specific instructions)
- The company must provide at its expense personal protective gear to all employees. In case of any work related accident, the company must provide adequate fist aid and any further medical treatment that might be necessary.
- The company must ensure access to safe drinking water and sanitation facilities.
Exploitation Atrocities and Harassment :
1. Exploitation : Most people need their jobs to earn living to buy food, clothing, shelter, support a family and live a satisfied life. Unfortunately, it is this basic need for survival that opens of the doors to exploitation. When a people afraid of loosing their job because they will not to be able to survive without it, they become more act to tolerate working in an environment they do not like.
The risk of quitting the job or being fired by the employer if they confront their employer with the problems they are facing makes them allow themselves to be treated badly. Some employer see this fear as an opportunity and take advantage of their workers.
There are many ways a company can exploit an employees.
- Not being paid for the true worth of your work.
- Being overworked- either very long shifts with little or no breaks, or continuous day of work with no days off. In both cases the results physical stress, at times even leading to depression.
- Not getting due to credit for your work- whether verbal praise/ acknowledgement or monetary bonuses/ raises.
- Unfair treatment, discrimination. This would include preferential treatment of certain employees over others racism, sexism, and any other bias that makes an employee feel that they are not being treated fairly at the work place.
2. Workplace Harassment : Workplace harassment is any type of unwelcome action towards an employee that leads to difficulty in performing assigned tasks or causes the employees to feel he / she is working in hostile environment. The harassment may be based on factors such as race, gender, culture, age, sexual orientation or religious or political preferences. In many countries there are laws that protect employees from enduring this type of on-the-job abuse, if the reality of the harassment can be proven.
Harassment covers wide range of offensive behavior. It is commonly understood as behavior that is intended to disturbed or upset, and is harassment and sexual harassment, The Civil Rights act of 1964 addresses the most severe form of discrimination at the workplace. It is unlawful for any employer to discriminate on the basis of sex, caste, race, gender, etc.
3. Prevention of Harassment : Following the principle of “Prevention is better than Cure”, employers must avoid cases of harassment by putting in place an equal opportunities policy that defines explicitly “Harassment” Employees must be educated and aware of these policies and the consequences of harassment.
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