The International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), a labor rights alliance, recently published the inaugural edition of its Global Rights Index, which examines the state of workers’ rights in 139 countries. Based on 97 indicators — such as the ability to join unions, access due process and receive legal protection — ITUC also ranked the countries on a 1 (best) to 5 (worst) scale.
The results are rather surprising: Among the countries with the best rating were Uruguay, Togo, Sweden, South Africa and Slovakia. Some countries received such poor assessments that they actually went off the scale: Central African Republic, Libya, Palestine, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria and Ukraine had the dubious distinction of being awarded a 5+ rating.
As for the U.S., it received a lowly 4 for weak union rights and uneven collective bargaining.