The International Labour Organization (ILO) estimates that more than 600 million new jobs have to be created by 2030, roughly 40 million per year, just to keep pace with the growth of the global working-age population. However, the challenge is that those jobs (as well as those of the 780 million people who currently work and earn less than USD 2 a day, below the line of poverty) could be framed in the Decent Work paradigm. Namely, not only providing living wages, but also considering the “quality” of that work: safety, individual growth, freedom, and equal opportunities. Is this possible in a globalized world? How and why does Decent Work influence the development of countries?

Photographer: Claudia Janke (tel: +44 (0) 7971253761) India,2009 - Gap factory visit, New Delhi

Author: Claudia Janke ETI / TUC

The ILO defines Decent Work as the one that “dignifies and allows the development of own capacities”, and offers “opportunities for work that is productive and delivers a fair income, security in the workplace and social protection for families, better prospects for personal development and social integration, freedom for people to express their concerns, organize and participate in the decisions that affect their lives, and equality of opportunity and treatment for all women and men.”

In this way, Decent Work reflects a comprehensive vision that takes into account not only issues relating to access to work (participation, employment, underemployment, unemployment, among others), but also qualitative aspects that affect individuals at work, such as workplace conditions, employment security, excessive work hours and work-life balance, workplace ethics (forced labour and child labour), gender equality and non-discrimination, and social dialog and worker participation.

Recently, the ILO has released a publication to understand why Decent Work must be a priority for all:

✓ Because Decent Work drives development. An ILO research shows that developing countries that invested in quality jobs grew faster.

✓ Because Decent Work is what people want. A Gallup World Poll ranked access to good jobs (besides good health) as the #1 priority for people.

✓ Because Decent Work makes societies more equitable, inclusive, and sustainable.

✓ Because the quality of jobs, not just the quantity, is what matters.

Despite the progress made in the past few years (especially in countries of our region), the ILO has underlined the need to include Decent Work into the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which stresses the importance of promoting sustainable rural livelihoods, specifically targeting the agro-food sectors. These guidelines are aimed not only to help leaders tackle Decent Work issues in those areas nationwide, but also to put on the public agenda the need to be alert to initiatives and discussions which stimulate decision-making towards improving the quality of life.

CONSTRUIR TV JOINS TO CELEBRATE THE WORLD DAY FOR DECENT WORK on October, 7th. That is why this month we present to you WORKERS AT RISK, every Wednesday at 9 pm (reruns Sundays at 9 pm). Only on Construir TV, each and every work on just one channel.

*Headline Picture: Munevver Sevim, “Equality” /ILO

About the Author
Estudié Ciencias de la Comunicación y soy periodista. En medios realicé tareas diversas como cubrir acontecimientos para diarios zonales, actualizar portales web y redactar panoramas informativos radiales. Desde hace algunos años me especializo en la generación de contenidos de calidad para redes sociales y actualmente me desempeño como editora y redactora de contenidos para el Facebook y el sitio web de Construir TV.
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