Like Oliver Twist, ILO Says G20’s Measures to Safeguard Jobs, Incomes Not Enough

Respecting workers’ fundamental rights and effective dialogue with workers’ and employers’ organisations is the only way to create a solid, equitable, global recovery, and ensure the public support needed to carry the measures through
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International Labour Organization (ILO)

By Akanimo Sampson

The commitment of G20 to safeguard people’s jobs and incomes has received a thumb up from the International Labour Organisation (ILO).

G20’s Labour and Employment Ministers made a commitment for “full global cooperation” to safeguard people’s jobs and incomes.

While welcoming the development, ILO’s Director-General, Guy Ryder, also warned that the current support measures are not enough.

As the crisis spreads to low and middle income countries, Ryder says

"we will need to do much more to protect workers and support enterprises, because these countries are less prepared for a protracted crisis.

"Otherwise, the combination of large informal economies and low social protection coverage will spell disaster for people and economies. Our aim should be to help these countries support their people, weather the crisis, and to build back better.

"We need global solidarity to support investment in these economies, in their social and environmental renewal, in their people and in the institutions of work that will effectively protect workers and their families.

‘’If not, the already large inequalities will widen, poverty will deepen, social progress will be lost and the path towards recovery will be very hazardous.”

In a statement after their virtual Extraordinary Meeting on April 23, the G20 ministers committed themselves to take “in full global cooperation…a human-centred approach to promote employment, bolster social protection, stabilise labour relations and promote the Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work .”




After making his presentation to the meeting, Ryder welcomed the ministers’ endorsement of the importance of social dialogue in creating appropriate, responsive and durable solutions to the pandemic.

He said,

“Respecting workers’ fundamental rights and effective dialogue with workers’ and employers’ organisations is the only way to create a solid, equitable, global recovery, and ensure the public support needed to carry the measures through”.

ILO is proposing an integrated four-pillar policy response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

This includes support for the economy and employment; support for enterprises, jobs and incomes; protection for those working during lockdowns and as economies reopen, and the use of social dialogue

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