Engineers Against Poverty (EAP) presents a new series of publications and starts with a discussion around the use of labour in mega sports events.
Labour abuse seems to have become the ‘normal’ practice in the implementation of Mega Sport Events (MSEs). Tight deadlines and a multitude of infrastructure projects to be completed risk worker welfare to the point that, in recent times, virtually all events have been accompanied by fatalities on site and severe human rights violations. Although good practices exist and are implemented by delivery authorities and civil society organisations, bidding regulations provided by sports organisations contain deadly oversights. A redesign of MSE bidding rules is paramount to breaking this cycle of abuse. There are several other key components to creating a fair game in MSEs: capacity building platforms to develop workers’ skills for long-term employability, ring-fenced payments from project owners to the workforce to avoid wage delays, multi-stakeholder monitoring systems to ensure health and safety standards during construction, accessible grievance channels to deal with labour issues in a prompt manner, a clearly defined system of liability and a commitment from bidders to abide to International Labour Organization (ILO) labour standards.