We are seeking a consultant to assist the STITCH partnership Social Dialogue Working Group (SDWG). The position is approximately for 25-30 days spread over one year (approximately 30 June 2022 – 30 April 2023). The position will be remote and open to applicants in any country.

Description of STITCH programme
Together for Change in the garment industry: Fair clothing worldwide through cooperation and social dialogue.

What is STITCH?
Sustainable Textile Initiative: Together for Change (STITCH) is a partnership with a common vision: a global textile and garment industry that contributes to an equal and just society by respecting human rights in the world of work. The partnership consists of 6 organisations: two labour rights organisations: CDI in Vietnam and Cividep in India; two Dutch trade unions: CNV Internationaal and Mondiaal FNV; and two multi-stakeholder initiatives: ETI in the UK and Fair Wear in The Netherlands.

We share the goal of an industry where garment workers, of which 75% are women, can exercise their right to freedom of association (FoA), and access safe, dignified and properly paid work. STITCH envisages workplaces where workers feel free to speak out, unionise, and bargain collectively for better working conditions. By strengthening trade unions, we can enhance workers’ influence in the value chain. By influencing the most powerful players in the value chain – brands – we can create space for workers to organise and secure a seat at the negotiation table. In the meantime, factory employers have a strengthened position vis à vis their customers (brands), and improving brands’ purchasing practices creates the potential for better working conditions and rewarding FoA.

Social dialogue (SD) is intrinsic to achieving the STITCH ambitions at industry, national and enterprise level and brings together key stakeholders (workers, employers/brands, governments) to foster industrial relations. The social dialogue framework can also be applied in thematic pathways such as gender.

How does STITCH operate?
We collectively stand up for better working conditions and adherence to labour rights by:

  • Capacitating suppliers and trade unions to improve their social dialogue and governments and sourcing dialogue with brands
  • Capacitating and empowering workers and trade union organisations to engage effectively in social dialogues and promote gender equity at work
  • Working with local unions and labour rights organisations on collective bargaining to influence higher wages, gender issues and decent work
  • Engaging with brands towards more responsible business, leveraging the crucial role they play in making the industry both more ethical and sustainable
  • Advocating for legislation for companies sourcing in production countries in order to hold them accountable for better working conditions and remuneration

STITCH is active in garment-producing countries across Asia, including Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Myanmar and Vietnam, and has developed a regional approach for the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.

STITCH Social Dialogue Team (SDWG)
Freedom of association and social dialogue are central to the STITCH objectives as laid out in the Theory of Change. All STITCH consortium members have interventions aimed at promoting Freedom of Association and empower workers and trade unions to organize themselves and raise their voice to improve working conditions.

Consortium members meet at the STITCH Consortium level in several (thematic) working groups, which have been set up, i.e. Gender Working Group, Lobby & advocacy working group and social dialogue team.

The objectives of the SDWG are:

  1. Ensure exchange, alignment and mutual learning on SD and FoA across the consortium partners to achieve our Theory of Change.
  2. Ensure that FoA and the SD methodology are comprehensively and consistently integrated across the STITCH consortium and embedded in mHRDD advocacy and grievance mechanism.
  3. Contribute to capacity-strengthening of STITCH consortium staff members on FoA and SD in order to apply in our key-interventions and work at country, sectoral or workplace level.
  4. To ensure that FoA and SD are included in the learning agenda of STITCH
  5. Ensure that consortium members are kept informed about the work and developments on FoA and SD of each consortium member organisation and are aligned when appropriate.
  6. Develop and support joint interventions between consortium partners where appropriate
  7. Support within the consortium and between partners to progress & strengthen democratically and independent worker representation

Scope of work of the STITCH Social Dialogue Consultant
To support the SDWG in its roles and tasks, STITCH is looking for a Social Dialogue Consultant. The consultant will work at the Consortium level with a primary focus of co-ordinating the SDWG activities. The main objectives of this consultancy are for the consultant to participate in SDWG meetings and will upon consultation with the SDWG contribute to the SDWG objectives. In making the objectives more tangible the consultant is expected to develop a workplan for the year, in coordination with SDWG.

It should, at a minimum, include:

  • Further contribute to finalisation of the FOA/SD Consortium briefing note and advising SDWG on the development of tools/processes such as good practices, FoA/SD training for thematic streams such as ‘gender’ and corporate/business education
  • Gathering data, resources, research and good practice case studies to inform planning
  • Monitor and advise the STITCH Consortium on exchange, alignment, and mutual learning on FoA/SD across the consortium partners
  • Supporting the PMEL team in the integration of the FoA/SD in our monitoring and reporting systems
  • Support SDWG to identify core areas for learning on FoA/SD (in the context of the learning agenda: does our work sufficiently contribute to enhancing workers’ voice and/or their representatives and address FoA violations and priorities in the sector?)
  • Contributing to consortium learning
  • Advising on SDWG plans for collaborative approaches (where applicable)
  • Reviewing reporting formats and templates and reporting of SDWG
  • Advising STITCH strategic leads and steering committee on integrating FoA/SD in consortium interventions

The consultant will report monthly during SDWG meetings on their work. Furthermore, a quarterly narrative report will be provided to the SDWG and the STITCH Consortium Coordinator, including recommendations to the SDWG and other working groups and the consortium as a whole (strategic leads and steering committee).

Profile of Consultant

  • Minimum of bachelor’s degree in relevant field (social sciences, political sciences), and/or proven knowledge and experience on FoA and social dialogue in relation to labour rights and HRDD (in global supply chains)
  • Experience in applying FoA/SD and HRDD in business or programmes
  • Experience working in a multi-stakeholder setting
  • Preferably has experience in advising/training
  • Preferably has practical experience in TGSL supply chain and production countries
  • Ability to work quickly and efficiently with a range of different organisations
  • Speaks and writes fluent English

Work Setting
The consultant will coordinate with the members of the SDWG. The consultant will report directly to Lisa Süss, STITCH Consortium Coordinator.

The consultant is hired for approximately 25 to 30 days. Contract is for about one year (approximately 30 June 2022 until 30 April 2023). The exact planning will be made in a work plan, to be developed in close coordination with the SDWG.

The consultancy fee payment will be on a monthly basis upon the submission of an invoice detailing the time and work.

Please send your CV along with a consultancy proposal including budget to Mara van der Kamp (vanderkamp@fairwear.org). The deadline for proposals is Monday 30 May 2022.


Fair Wear Foundation


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