Transport for London (TfL) joins Electronics Watch

Transport for London (TfL) has become the first public transport organisation to affiliate to Electronics Watch, providing €60,000 a year to fund long-term monitoring and improvement of factories, and gain access to intelligence from Electronics Watch partnerships with monitoring organisations based in the areas of electronics production used by the public sector. TfL already has a strict ethical procurement process in place to encourage and support its suppliers to provide good and fair working conditions.

Transport for London (TfL) joins Electronics Watch

Transport for London (TfL) has become the first public transport organisation to affiliate to Electronics Watch, providing €60,000 a year to fund long-term monitoring and improvement of factories, and gain access to intelligence from Electronics Watch partnerships with monitoring organisations based in the areas of electronics production used by the public sector. TfL already has a strict ethical procurement process in place to encourage and support its suppliers to provide good and fair working conditions.

TfL invests heavily in electronics, on products such as smart phones and tablets which are increasingly being used by frontline staff to help millions of customers every day. The electronic products that TfL buys also includes the computers thatpower the operation of traffic signals, safety-critical control rooms and the booking systems for Dial-a-Ride, all helping TfL to support over 30 million journeys each day.

Philip Hewson, Head of Commercial Information Communications Technology at TfL, said: "Ensuring that the people working within the electronics industry are able to work free from exploitation and abuse is vital.  By signing up to Electronics Watch, we are making a statement to the industry that their products must be manufactured ethically and we want our suppliers to make sure that people working with the industry have improved working conditions that as a minimum are safe and respect their human rights."

As an affiliate, TfL will also have the right to help shape Electronics Watch policies and practices as the organisation develops.

Björn Claeson, affiliations coordinator for Electronics Watch, said: "We welcome Transport for London to Electronics Watch and look forward to working with them to address safety and human rights in their electronics supply chains.  Large institutions with a commitment to human rights, such as TfL, can make a tangible difference for electronics workers globally by combining their strength with public buyers across Europe through Electronics Watch."

The GLA currently supports a number of ethical sourcing initiatives including the ethical sourcing of timber, to which TfL, being one of the larger GLA functional bodies, makes a significant contribution.  TfL also has ethical sourcing arrangements in place for the procurement of its uniforms.  Support for work of Electronics Watch in improving working conditions in the global electronics industry is consistent with and complementary to TfL's existing work on ethical sourcing.

Signing up to Electronics Watch complements TfL's existing work on ethical sourcing. This includes the procurement of uniforms, and being part of the Greater London's Authority's ethical sourcing initiatives, including timber.