Brazilian labour rights have been brought into sharp focus once again by the 2014 World Cup. The Brazilian construction industry has been the most obvious player demonstrating the problematic nature of employer-employee relations.
Naturally, there has been extensive growth and demand within the Brazilian infrastructure sector in the run up to the World Cup with construction now representing over 16% of Brazil’s GDP. This will continue apace with the future arrival of the Olympics. The construction industry’s human rights record remains under scrutiny despite a new model of regulation for the sector being agreed by social and government partners in 2012 following widespread protests and violent demonstrations in 2011. While Brazil’s labour laws are generally considered to be tough, health and safety regulations within the construction industry are often flexible, giving rise to industrial unrest in this sector.