International Stakeholder Meeting 2015

FWF International Stakeholder Meeting 2015:
The Future of FWF's Worker Helpline and Complaint System

23 April, 11:30-17:00

About this year’s meeting:

The expertise of a diverse range of stakeholders lie at the heart of FWF’s work. Our successes are directly linked to the contributions of our stakeholders. One of FWF’s most notable recent successes has been the dramatic increase in use of FWF’s worker helpline.

While this is good news – more workers are seeking solutions to workplace problems – it also means FWF needs to find new ways of dealing with the complaints in a responsible and sustainable way. This evolution offers an important learning opportunity for FWF and for our stakeholders. We invite you to help shape a critical part of FWF's work.

Agenda Stakeholder Meeting

What we’ve learned:  Recent lessons FWF’s worker helpline & complaints mechanism.  FWF will share replicable strategies that have helped break down barriers to helpline use, and lessons from remediation efforts.

Respect and Remedy:  The UN Framework and complaints mechanisms. We will look at how the evolving understanding of the UN Framework on Business and Human Rights can help guide future work on grievance systems.

What’s next:  A sustainable future for FWF’s complaints mechanism. FWF’s stakeholders have contributed to the shaping of FWF’s the helpline and complaints mechanism. Now we ask you to help us design its future.  Increased use of the complaints network, along with other developments, has raised a number of important questions.  We will invite your input on a number of them during the meeting, for example:

• The helpline has grown from a few dozen calls to several hundred calls per year, and could soon be receiving thousands of calls per year, leading to hundreds of complaints. What does a sustainable future for the system look like under those conditions?

• The complaints mechanism was always intended as a backup when local systems were not trusted or available. What new steps can be taken to further support local systems?  To support better social dialogue?

• Are there more effective or efficient remediation strategies that should be tried?

• What could a system that involves non- FWF member brands at joint suppliers look like?

Plus: In addition to the discussions around complaints mechanisms, FWF will also provide updates on major developments, including progress on FWF’s Brand Performance Check system since collecting stakeholder input at last year’s meeting, and FWF’s selection as a Strategic Partner of the Netherlands Foreign Ministry from 2016-2020.

Coordination with NCP Brede Stakeholderbijeenkomst Meeting
The Dutch OECD NCP stakeholder meeting on grievance mechanisms and FWF’s stakeholder meeting have been coordinated in the same place so you can easily attend both. The NCP meeting will take place in the morning of the 23rd; the FWF meeting in the afternoon. A coffee break from 11:00 – 12:00 will allow time for networking between the two.

For more information about registration, please consult your invitation email, or contact Tara Scally at scally [@]

Member-stakeholder dinner
23 April 18:00

The member-stakeholder dinner will take place at restaurant De Smederij, in Hotel Brooklyn on Thursday April 23rd at 18.00. Cost for the dinner is €60 per person, including beverages. FWF will invoice attendees for the dinner after the conference. The easiest way to reach the Smederij from Amsterdam Centraal Station is to take ferry 906 (going towards NDSM werf). More information on public transport can be found on

Main Programme: This is what we do!
24 April 9:15-17:00

The conference main programme, on Friday 24, will be held at the IJ-Kantine, Amsterdam. The address is MT. Ondinaweg 15-17, 1033 RE, Amsterdam. This location is accesable by both public transportation and car. The easiest way to reach the IJ-Kantine from the central station is to take ferry 906 (going towards NDSM werf).

This year's Main Programme will focus on exploring real-world examples of workfloor improvements;  on exciting new projects planned for the coming years; and on introducing new tools like FWF's Living Wage Portal and the Factory Guide. The Main Programme will also feature the annual Best Practice Award.

  • Minister Lilianne Ploumen (NL Ministry for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation) will share her perspectives on the role governments can play in developing international trade practices that are more effective in protecting human rights.
  • Jenny Holdcroft (Policy Director, IndustriALL Global Union) and Mark Held (General Secretary, European Outdoor Group) will share their thoughts on what unions and business associations can do in improving conditions.
  • Margreet Vrieling (FWF Verification) will discuss the future of responsible purchasing practices and remediation – important parts of what FWF members do!
  • Sophie Koers (FWF Communications) will share the latest thinking on how members and stakeholders can talk about what they do.
  • New board chair Anita Normark and director Erica van Doorn discuss what's ahead for FWF.
  • FWF's new Living Wage Portal will be introduced – your source for cutting-edge information on how to make progress towards living wages.
  • Law firm Arnold & Porter will provide an interactive workshop on living wages and competition law.
  • The UN-supported anti-harassment committees are starting to show results – we'll share the latest!
  • Participate in a sample of the factory anti-harassment training offered by FWF – experience the Workplace Education Programme firsthand!
  • Hands-on sessions featuring updates on preventing workplace violence against women, transparent supply chains, and including workers in remediation processes.
  • We wouldn't forget a delicious lunch with time for networking.
  • And the winner of the 2015 Best Practice Award will be announced!

09.00 doors open
10.00 start morning programme
12.15 start lunch
13.15 start afternoon programme
16.00 best practice award ceremony
17.00 drinks
18.00 end conference