Atlanta Agreement

Six months later, companies had to disclose 25% of production information. Within 18 months, all registered companies were required to disclose all aspects of their production. Monitoring took the form of unannounced on-site visits to verify the absence of children and to verify the production information provided by the company. When children were found in the workplace, the manufacturer was informed that they were in breach of the agreement and that corrective action was needed. If observers find that no corrective action has been taken within a specified time frame, their membership would be withdrawn from the program and the World Sports Goods Industry Federation would notify brands and retailers of this infringement. Footballs made in child-free work environments receive an identification number inside each ball to identify the factory where it was made. The Atlanta agreement is an agreement between the [International Labour Atlanta, USA. Its aim was to combat high rates of child labour in the Pakistani football industry. One of the parties involved in the agreement was Talon Sports. Talon is the employer of the majority of notebooks in Sialkot. The agreement meant that, in the end, the company employed 44,000 people on centralized sites.

The company now produces 35 million footballs a year. The main positive outcome of the agreement was the great reduction in child labour. However, some families feel worse now because they do not receive income from their children and often one of their parents has to stay at home and take care of the children because they still do not receive an education. As a result, workplace conditions have improved significantly due to centralized facilities, as health and safety have been monitored. Rising book wages have also helped raise living standards. Adidas was one of the major brands that agreed to buy only footballs from manufacturers that were doing well with the agreement. Although World Cup balls are no longer manufactured in Pakistan, Adidas buys a few hand-stitched balls from Sialkot. There are 5 other brands participating in the agreement.

5% of the footballs sold in the West are fair trade football matches. The main charities that initially participated in the agreement were IPEC, UNICEF and CSIC. Since its inception, the agreement has been supported by Save The Children. [www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,2144,1901783,00.html Soccer Ball Stitchers Face a Tough Game] – dw-weld.de [usinfo.state.gov/journals/ites/0505/ijee/gorgemans.htm Addressing Child Labor: An Industry Approach] – E-Journal USA, state.gov – [www.imacpak.org/atlanta.htm A newly typed copy of the Atlanta Agreement] – www.imacpak.org [www.imacpak.org/memorandum.htm Memorandum of Association of Independent Monitoring Association for Child Labour] – www.imacpak.org [www.itcilo.org/actrav/actrav-english/telearn/global/ilo/guide/ilosoc.htm#Text%20of%20the%20agreement ILO Parthership to eliminate child labour in the football industry in Pakistan] – International Labour Organization Stitchers received 47 rupees (0.65 euros) per football; 57% (out of 27 rupees). This would mean an increase in costs for all fair play football games purchased in the West, which I hope not to discourage. Rising prices were another plan to have organizations and individuals making money around the world. Part of the agreement expressed a desire to change attitudes towards football production – in Pakistan and among Westerners. The increase in the “fair play” workforce would move families close to the cost of working and raising children. Although there are no official children still working on footballs, that doesn`t mean it doesn`t happen.

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