On August 24, 2017, at the IPS Auditorium, the GLWC and Fairtrade International, in partnership with the IPS, conducted a major validation event for its Sri Lanka Estate sector living wage study. The session gathered a range of stakeholder representatives from the Regional Plantation Companies (RPCs), estate sector Trade Unions, policymakers, academia, industry associations, and voluntary sustainability standard systems.
The goal of this session was to ensure uptake of the living wage estimate and to get any feedback on key elements that might need to be reviewed before release. It was hosted by the Institute of Policy Studies of Sri Lanka which also led the research.
The validation event allowed presentation of the benchmark study and results by the IPS team, including Research Fellow, Manoj Thibbotuwawa, Research Fellow, Nisha Arunatilake and Research Economist, Priyanka Jayawardena. Michelle Bhattacharyya, Coordinator for the GLWC, also represented the larger context of the study and outlined the Anker Methodology to the audience. This was followed by time to discuss concerns and questions about the living wage work in Sri Lanka and to facilitate a strong dialogue with a range of stakeholders about the issue of living wage.
This session provided some incredibly valuable insights mostly relevant for the prevailing wage comparison to living wage and will result in the GLWC looking again at how current wages were assessed to ensure accurate context for the living wage report.