Many workers in tea estate communities still experience poor living conditions and lack communication channels to address grievances with their employers and hold businesses accountable.
Since 2017, we have been working in partnership with CARE International to establish Community Development Forums (CDFs) on tea estates. CDFs are like mini parliaments. They provide a space for sharing and debates, opening up dialogue between workers, management and the wider community, and enabling collective decisions to be made about community development (such as health or education) and labour conditions. Everything is negotiated and decided in a transparent way. Management, tea pluckers and workers, unions, and community are all represented. Importantly, women are given an equal role.
By establishing CDFs, we are putting the community at the heart of the solution, creating a sustainable workforce and empowering workers — especially women and young people.