Trade unionists and environment experts from around the world have agreed that environmental rights such as access to clean water, health care and energy be made part of workers rights.
The decision was taken during a conference on labour and environment organised by the United Nations Environment Programme in Nairobi from January 15-17, 2006.
Representatives from more than 160 trade unions agreed to press for the expansion of workers' rights to include campaign to fight aids, preventing worker death and illness from the effects of toxic chemicals, and to ensure the right to reproductive health for women and men.
Participants stressed the need to work together so that safety and environmental standards are similar in rich and poor countries. It would also ensure that waste from developed nations is not dumped in developing countries.
The trade union leaders said that environment protection represents not only a track to healthy employment but is also a source of new jobs in areas like renewable energy.