Gopinath Parakuni

General Secretary of Cividep - India

Active in Country: India

DTP Alumnus: 2015 DTP Fellowship Program Sydney & 2008 Human Rights Advocacy and Business Program - Philippines

 

 

Gopinath Parakuni participated in DTP Fellowship Program in 2015 in Australia. He also participated in DTP Human Rights Advocacy and Business Program in Philippines in 2008.

 

Gopinath is the General Secretary of CIVIDEP, an organisation concerned with workers’ rights and corporate accountability. CIVIDEP is an organisation working to educate and empower workers and communities in India to ensure that businesses comply with human rights, labour rights and environmental standards. The organisation targets the garments, electronics, and leather and tea/coffee sectors.  Cividep is based in Bangalore, India and has campaigned to protect the rights of vulnerable women working in the garment sector there.  Cividep is a member of a number of international networks, including the Good Electronics Network, OECD Watch and the Asian Network for the Rights of Occupational and Environmental Victims.

 

In this role, Gopinath is responsible for the overall management of the organisation to achieve the goals of better working conditions for workers in global supply chains and to hold corporations accountable for their actions. Gopinath is also involved in building two grassroots organisations: Munnade (Women Garment Workers’ Front) and the Garment and Textile Workers’ Union. Gopinath first joined DTP’s 2008 Human Rights Advocacy and Business Program, with a particular focus on exploring international norms and mechanisms for advocacy in the face of human rights violations committed by businesses.

 

The International Federation for Human Rights has highlighted serious human rights concerns in garment factories in India, including those supplying global brands. Key issues range from salaries below minimum wage to unsafe working conditions and physical abuse – as well as sexual harassment against vulnerable women workers.

 

"Most of our work is around the idea of ‘decent work’. Since 2000 we have been working with women in the export garment industry to help them organise their interests and negotiate with their management. We also work with international companies to put pressure on their brands to ensure their suppliers, the manufacturers, give proper working conditions to their workers”

 

Profile was part of 2015 DTP's 25th Anniversary Exhibition