• Among the various functions of the WTO, these are regarded by analysts as the most important: It oversees the implementation, administration and operation of the covered agreements. It provides a forum for negotiations and for settling disputes. Review and propagate the national trade policies, and ensure the coherence and transparency of trade policies through surveillance in global economic policy-making Assists in developing, least-developed and low-income countries in transition to adjust to WTO rules and disciplines through technical cooperation and training. • 11 committees under the Goods Council each with a specific task. All members of WTO participate in committees.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is an independent federal agency that enforces laws against workplace discrimination. The EEOC investigates discrimination complaints based on an individual's race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability and retaliation for reporting and/or opposing a discriminatory practice. It is empowered to file discrimination suits against employers on behalf of alleged victims and to adjudicate claims of discrimination brought against federal agencies. Employee Privacy • Employers want to be sure their employees are doing a good job, but employees don't want their every sneeze or trip to the water cooler logged. That's the essential conflict of workplace monitoring. • New technologies make it possible for employers to monitor many aspects of their employees' jobs, especially on telephones, computer terminals, electronic and voice mail, and when employees are using the Internet. Such monitoring is virtually unregulated. Therefore, unless company policy specifically states otherwise (and even this is not assured), your employer may listen, watch and read most of your workplace communications. • A 2005 survey by the American Management Association found that three-fourths of employers monitor their employees' web site visits in order to prevent inappropriate surfing. And 65% use software to block connections to web sites deemed off limits for employees. About a third track keystrokes and time spent at the keyboard. Just over half of employers review and retain electronic mail messages. Over 80% of employers disclose their monitoring practices to employees. And most employers have established policies governing Internet use, including e-mail use (84%) and personal Internet use (81%). Can my employer listen to my phone calls at work? • In most instances, yes. For example, employers may monitor calls with clients or customers for reasons of quality control. However, some state laws require that they be informed that the conversation is recorded or monitored by either putting a beep tone on the line or playing a recorded message. An important exception is made for personal calls. Under federal case law, when an employer realizes the call is personal, he or she must immediately stop monitoring the call. However, when employees are told not to make personal calls from specified business phones,