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‘Cataclysmic' COVID-19 demands human-centred recovery policies: ILO
By TII News Service
Jun 08, 2021 , Geneva

    

THE "cataclysmic" effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the world of work has highlighted the necessity of human-centred recovery policies, ILO Director-General Mr Guy Ryder said on Monday at the opening plenary sitting of the 109th International Labour Conference (ILC).

More than 4,300 delegates from 175 ILO member states have registered to attend this segment of the ILC which is being held virtually from June 7-19.

Mr Ryder underlined the consequences of the "multiple and growing inequalities in our societies" the pandemic has exposed and the past failure to address them over time.

"The sum of human suffering caused by the pandemic is all the greater for that collective failure. In this house of social justice we, more than most, need to draw conclusions from this," he said.

The ILO chief acknowledged the efforts and commitment of governments to do what it takes to overcome the health crisis and mitigate its social and economic consequences.

He told delegates that it was "extraordinarily important that this Conference takes place… as people across the globe hope and reach for a recovery that leads to a resilient, sustainable, fairer, and better future."

The Director-General reminded delegates that the Centenary Declaration for the Future of Work, adopted by the ILC in 2019, gives an agreed and highly-valued roadmap for recovery.

"The pandemic has highlighted just how inextricably health, social and economic, financial, trade, and intellectual property policy is really linked… We need to lever that realisation to forge better multilateral system coherence on a permanent basis, just as the Centenary Declaration urged us to do," he added.

During this session of the ILC, delegates will debate social protections and a COVID-19 outcome document that will provide guidance on policies for a human-centred recovery from the crisis. The ILC will further undertake its regular supervision of the application of international labour standards.

The official Conference opening was held on May 20, when the conference officers were elected. This segment will run from June 7-19, and a second segment is scheduled for November 25-December 11 when issues of inequalities and skills and lifelong learning will be discussed.

 
 
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