A new report from the ILO

In March 2021, at its 341st Session, the Governing Body decided to place on the agenda of the 110th Session (2022) of the International Labour Conference an item related to decent work and the social and solidarity economy (SSE), for the general discussion that will be held in June 2022.

That decision has paved the way for what will be the first comprehensive discussion on the SSE at the ILO. Although the SSE is not new, its policy importance and visibility have grown significantly since the turn of the century. The ILO Declaration on Social Justice for a Fair Globalization (2008) recognizes a strong social economy as critical to sustainable economic development and employment opportunities. The ILO Centenary Declaration for the Future of Work (2019) acknowledges the role of the SSE in generating decent work, productive employment and improved living standards for all. The ILO’s global call to action for a human-centred recovery from the COVID-19 crisis that is inclusive, sustainable and resilient (2021) recognizes the role of the SSE for a broad-based, job-rich recovery with decent work opportunities for all. It is therefore timely to discuss the value added of the SSE and its role in advancing social justice through decent work and in promoting sustainable development.

The Report  which has been prepared to inform ILO constituents, and SSE partners ahead of the discussion is organised in 5 chapters :

  • Chapter 1 outlines the SSE around the world, details the constituent elements of the concept and offers a definition for discussion. It also presents regional overviews of SSE.
  • Chapter 2 provides evidence of the contributions of SSE to the global development priorities defined by the Decent Work Agenda and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
  • Chapter 3 examines the relationship of the ILO’s tripartite constituents with SSE, using examples from around the world.
  • Chapter 4 describes the Office’s work on SSE, with particular emphasis on the historical background, current programmes, development co-operation policy and partnerships, and capacity building activities.
  • Chapter 5 discusses the way forward in terms of strengthening the contribution of SSE to decent work and sustainable development. It highlights the importance of promoting an enabling environment for SSE, examines the links between SSE and the future of work, and suggests avenues for the Office’s future work on SSE.

A new Director for ILO

The ILO Governing Body has elected for the firt time an African person, Gilbert F. Houngbo, from Togo, as the Organization’s 11th Director-General, who will take office in October 2022. He was Prime Minister of Togo from September 2008 to July 2012. He has also held various positions within the United Nations System, including the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the International Labour Office and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

Here is an extract of his statement after his election

“I commit to represent the voices of those who rely on us in ILO. I’m thinking about the four billion people around the world who do not have access to social protection. I’m thinking about the 200-plus million of women and men who face unemployment. The 160 million children in child labour. The 1.6 billion people in the informal sector. The enterprises, particularly the small and medium sized enterprises that are facing supply chain disruption or closure due to crises’ including the pandemic, climate change and armed conflict. I’m thinking about the women and men who face discrimination, violence and harassment in the workplace and elsewhere. These are all expressions of unacceptable social injustice that we are morally if not legally bound to address.”

To know more about the election, go THERE .