The Impact of Corporate Social Responsibility on Workers and Trade Unions in Indonesia

Wednesday 22 February 2012

Source: AMRC

Author/s: Institute for Crisis Study and Alternative Development Strategy, Indonesia

Type: Research Paper

Keyword/s: corporate social responsibility, trade unions, workers, labor

Corporate social responsibility (CSR), though the concept has been evolving for decades, no universality of meaning has as yet been achieved. The worker and the trade union, both of which are stakeholders in the company, are certainly affected by a company’s CSR policy and implementation. This chapter focuses on CSR implementation that affects workers and trade unions by assuming that the content of a corporate CSR programme is everything that the company contributes to the worker which is not included in the labour laws, or in a working agreement or in a collective labour agreement, since there are indications that the leitmotiv of CSR programmes is to divert workers’ demands or weaken or even eliminate the trade union. By investigating CSR activities in four companies, this chapter shows that CSR is a subtle means by which the company management can show it for worker welfare, and provide tools to persuade the trade union to cooperate with management. The effect of CSR influence varies from no impact, to minimum impact and up to union busting when the company’s CSR plans fail. The result of this initial research shows that the forming and development of trade unions is necessary for workers to avoid a violation of their rights and to control the company’s CSR implementation with a collective labour agreement.

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