Articles

2012

  1. Cape Verde: How social protection can help the elderly

    04 June 2012

    The International Labour Conference is considering adoption of a Recommendation on Social Protection Floors. The ILO is convinced every country can move towards social security for all, and cites the example of impoverished Cape Verde.

  2. Tackling child labour: from commitment to action

    01 June 2012

    This paper considers the progress that ILO member States are making in the application of ILO Conventions and Recommendations. It draws on two reports considered by the 2012 International Labour Conference: 'Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work: From commitment to action' and 'Giving globalization a human face.

  3. High unemployment and growing inequality fuel social unrest around the world

    27 April 2012

    More than half of 106 countries surveyed by the ILO face a growing risk of social unrest and discontent, says the new World of Work Report published by the International Institute for Labour Studies (IILS) – the research arm of the ILO. An interview with IILS Director, Raymond Torres.

  4. How the ILO supports change in the Arab world

    17 January 2012

    The world has been transfixed in admiration at the courage of the women and men who have taken to the streets across the Arab States over the past year. Farah Dakhlallah, ILO Regional Outreach and Advocacy Officer in Beirut, reports from Yemen and Lebanon where the ILO assists in preparing a better future for workers in the region.

2011

  1. From the depths of an African shantytown, a nascent youth employment movement grows

    14 December 2011

    In Africa’s second largest slum, youth unemployment is sky high. But cooperative projects are helping youth find work and slowly lift themselves out of poverty through such projects as raising food in community gardens, processing waste for bio-fuel or providing improved sanitation. Journalist Anne Holmes reports on how this emerging economic revival is making a small but significant dent in a major ongoing challenge.

  2. International Year of Cooperatives: In Kenya, working hand in hand with the ILO to create cooperatives and jobs

    31 October 2011

    Cooperatives provide some 100 million jobs around the world. Many of these jobs provide for basic human needs, such as the dairy farms of Kenya. Today, some 13,000 cooperatives in Kenya have some 9 million members. As the United Nations launches its International Year of Cooperatives, Anne Holmes reports on how cooperatives are thriving, and the role of the ILO in their growth.

  3. Building a social protection floor in Mozambique

    10 October 2011

    Mozambique is a low-income country with high levels of poverty, informal and rural labour. Seriously affected by HIV and AIDS and exposed to climatic shocks and crises such as floods and droughts, the country’s institutions only have a limited capacity to deal with such shocks and offer social protection for the poor and vulnerable population. To address these challenges, an ILO technical cooperation project financed by Portugal works, together with other UN Agencies, to improve public policies and strengthen institutional capacity for the extension of social protection in Mozambique and other Portuguese-speaking African countries.

  4. Decent work for Africa’s Youth

    10 October 2011

    Africa has the youngest population in the world: Young women and men represent the continent’s best hope for getting on a sustainable development path. However, youth unemployment rates are double adult unemployment rates for Africa as a whole – for North Africa they are even four times higher. ILO Online reports from Egypt where the ILO supports a pioneering project helping youth to find decent employment after leaving school.

  5. Empowering South Africans with decent work

    07 October 2011

    While African economies have bounced back from the economic crisis, daunting challenges for the continent remain, including poverty, unemployment and underemployment. Faced with these and other major challenges, the Republic of South Africa is one of the 27 African ILO Member States that are implementing Decent Work Country Programmes (DWCPs) aimed at promoting decent work as a key component of their national development. ILO Online reports from Johannesburg, South Africa.

  6. Questions and Answers on global trends and challenges on occupational safety and health

    12 September 2011

    The XIX World Congress on Safety and Health at Work to be held in Istanbul on 11-15 September provides a major forum to discuss the latest safety and health challenges in the world of work. ILO Online spoke with Seiji Machida, Director of the ILO’s Programme on Safety and Health at Work and the Environment (SafeWork), about the Congress and the challenges ahead.

  7. Questions and answers on the hidden reality of children in domestic work

    08 August 2011

    The recently approved ILO Convention No. 189 and Recommendation No. 201 on decent work for domestic workers aim to protect and improve working and living conditions of millions of workers worldwide, who have few – if any – labour rights. Many are children who spend long hours working as domestic helpers, performing tasks such as cleaning, ironing, cooking, minding other children and gardening instead of being at school. ILO News spoke to ILO experts Martin Oelz (TRAVAIL) and José M. Ramírez (IPEC) on the current situation of child domestic workers and how the new Convention and Recommendation can help impact their lives.

  8. South Africa and the ILO team up to promote public employment and community work programmes

    27 July 2011

    With an official unemployment rate of 25 per cent, the South African government knows that employment creation cannot be left to the private sector alone. There is a huge gap between the jobs that are needed and the jobs that the market can generate. The State has the responsibility to fill that gap. Today South Africa has become a prime example of a country where public employment programmes (PEPs) and its Community Work Programme (CWP) are playing a key role in providing a minimum level of employment where markets are failing to do so. The CWP, although not universal in coverage, is being designed to test an employment guarantee.

  9. Questions and answers on the ILO response to challenges in the Arab World

    08 July 2011

    On 8 July 2011, the International Labour Organization (ILO) hosted a meeting on “The Arab World, Towards a New Era of Social Justice”, which brought together representatives of countries from the Middle East and North Africa (MENA), the international community, donors and ILO constituents. A background paper entitled “Challenges in the Arab world: an ILO response” on the ILO’s strategy and response was the basis for the discussions. It provides figures and trends on the employment situation and answers a series of questions around creating decent work opportunities in the region. A series of concept notes was also presented, covering areas where the MENA countries have requested ILO assistance. ILO is developing work in the MENA countries and seeks additional funding for some of these programmes.

  10. Questions and answers on labour regulation, Decent Work and the economic and jobs crisis

    04 July 2011

    How can labour regulation benefit the economic and labour markets? What is the role of regulation in terms of the challenges and opportunities it affords? How has the recent economic crisis affected regulation of labour markets, and can regulation contribute to economic recovery? These and other questions were on the agenda of the second Conference on the wider meaning of the often misunderstood concept of labour regulation.

  11. The impact of pesticide exposure on child labourers in agriculture

    22 June 2011

    The UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the International Labour Organization (ILO held a side event during the conference (on 22 June at 13:00) to highlight the impact of pesticide exposure on children, and child labourers in particular. ILO News spoke to Paola Termine, ILO Technical specialist on child labour in agriculture, who is also coordinating the International partnership for cooperation on child labour in agriculture, ahead of the meeting.

  12. Discussions on social security for all get under way

    07 June 2011

    The 100th International Labour Conference has started discussions on ways to establish social security for all as a powerful and affordable tool to promote economic growth, reduce poverty and mitigate the impact of crises. Yet, only about 20 percent of the world’s working age population has access to comprehensive social security systems, according to a new conference report, entitled “Social Security for Social Justice and a fair Globalization”.

  13. Questions and answers on Growth, Productive Employment and Decent Work in the LDCs

    06 May 2011

    In preparation for the Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC-IV), the International Labour Organization (ILO) has produced a report “Growth, Productive Employment and Decent Work in the LDCs,” which argues for transformative policies for decent work in LDCs. UN-NGLS (United Nations Non-Governmental Liaison Service) interviews José Manuel Salazar-Xirinachs, Executive Director for Employment, ILO, on the key insights and recommendations of the report.

  14. Reducing poverty through tourism (Questions & Answers)

    03 May 2011

    Least Developed Countries (LDCs) can draw on a range of policies to drive an agenda of structural transformation and decent work. A special event at the Fourth United Nations Conference on the Least Developed Countries to be held in Istanbul from 9-13 May, 2011, features Hotel, Catering and Tourism (HCT) as one of the fastest-growing economic sectors worldwide which can significantly contribute to social and economic development, as well as poverty reduction in LDCs. ILO Online spoke with Wolfgang Weinz, Hotels, Catering and Tourism Specialist in the ILO’s Sectoral Activities Department.

  15. Developing self reliance – Building hope: The ILO Employment for Peace Programme in Somalia

    07 April 2011

    Mogadishu, the capital city of Somalia, has been racked by violence and insecurity for nearly two decades. But there are signs of hope: among them, an ILO programme which provided a visible peace dividend to poor communities by engaging them in large scale employment-intensive projects. This and similar projects will be discussed at the ILO-IGAD-African Union Conference on "Employment for Peace, Stability and Development" on 11-12 April 2011 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Conference will map out a regional strategy for the Horn of Africa built upon a “virtuous triangle” consisting of the creation of employment opportunities, social protection for the most vulnerable and empowerment of people and communities. ILO Online reports from Mogadishu.

  16. Youth unemployment in the Arab world is a major cause for rebellion

    05 April 2011

    While images from protests in the Arab region go around the world, it is timely to look at the reasons that brought these mostly young people on to the streets. An extremely high youth unemployment rate of 23.4 per cent in 2010, is one major but not the only cause for these popular uprisings, says Dorothea Schmidt, senior employment expert in the ILO office in Cairo.