UN Migration Agency, RBA Team Up to Target Forced Labor, Exploitation


Sustainable Brands

Type of Resource

Online article

Year of Release






Sub Categories

Forced Labour, Migrant Workers

Issues Addressed

Human Rights, Labour


The partnership between IOM, the UN Migration Agency and the Responsible Business Alliance (RBA) seeks to boost cooperation, promote ethical recruitment and protect the rights of migrant workers.


The issue of worker exploitation and forced labor continues to gain global attention, as more and more companies rise to the challenge to align their operations with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

According to the latest global estimates on modern slavery, approximately 25 million people worldwide are working in situations of forced labor. Unethical recruitment is a root cause of forced labor, as many migrant workers are subject to high recruitment fees, personal debt, complicated recruitment practices, a lack of transparency about their eventual working conditions and inadequate legal protections in the countries in which they work.

The MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) between the IOM and the RBA provides a formal framework for them to pursue shared goals and objectives through the exchange of information, subject matter expertise and connecting global networks. It includes coordinating the objectives and technical aspects of the RBA’s Responsible Labor Initiative (RLI) and the International Recruitment and Integrity System (IRIS), which is being developed by IOM and a consortium of partners, as well as IOM and RBA training and other capacity-building initiatives and special projects.