Dalit Solidarity Network (UK)
Report demands UK companies act on caste discrimination
A second speaker at the meeting, held at Portcullis House Westminster, Jean Lambert MEP stated that the European Parliament could consider opening a dialogue with such companies, on a European basis, asking them how they are addressing caste discrimination in South Asia. She also said the Parliament was seeking to monitor any discrimination in the post-Tsunami reconstruction work and that she is in dialogue with the Human Rights Office in the Parliament and the EU about their monitoring role in India and the other countries of South Asia.
Jeremy Corbyn MP, a third DSN Trustee, said he would be putting down an Early Day Motion in the UK Parliament referring to the Ambedkar Employment Principles, which all companies, Government agencies and international NGOs working in South Asian countries should sign. These are aimed at combating caste discrimination in employment, and are based on race equality principles originally drawn up in the UK. Mr Corbyn would also be seeking an adjournment debate. DSN Trustees Professor Mary Grey and Rt Revd John Gladwin, Bishop of Chelmsford, gave messages of support.
The report ‘Caste Discrimination and the Private Sector’ follows a Seminar held last Autumn which was attended by three of the major UK banks outsourcing to India. It gives information about initiatives also taking place in Denmark and the Netherlands. The main article is by Professor S.K. Thorat of the Delhi-based Indian Institute for Dalit Studies, who is giving a DSN-sponsored Seminar on this topic at the School of Oriental and African Studies on Thursday, 30th June at 11 am. The report is available from the DSN at the address below. The meeting also agreed a new management structure for the Network, which is now a registered charity.
For further information: Revd David Haslam, (020) 7274 6633 & 07963 254828 and Gina Borbas (020) 7501 8323
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