Collective bargaining in the workplace is essential for a global recovery: ILO |

After two years COVID-19 of self-isolation and amid growing pressure on the classic 9 to 5 business model – from zero-hours contracts to remote work – ILO CEO Guy Ryder insisted on Thursday that voluntary bargaining, known as collective bargaining, has proven its worth.

“Workers want to keep their heads above water when prices are rising like they are now and they want workplace safety and the paid sick leave that has proven to be so important over the past two years,” he told reporters in Geneva. “Employers, for their part, have welcomed the agreements that have allowed them to retain skilled and experienced workers so they can resume work, recover, and recover.”

He added: “The higher the percentage of workers covered by collective agreements, the smaller the wage inequality.. And the more equality and diversity is likely to be in the workplace.”

To stay afloat

According to new report agency of the United Nations, more than one in three employees in 98 countries currently have wages, working hours and other professional conditions set out in collective agreements.

But there are significant differences between countries, according to the ILO, from over 75% of workers with a collective bargaining agreement in many European countries and Uruguay to less than 25% in about half of the countries for which data were available.

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the ILO Social Dialogue Report 2022 found that collective agreements have helped protect jobs and people’s incomes.

Collective bargaining has played a critical role during the pandemic in building resilience by protecting workers and businesses.ensure business continuity and preserve jobs and income,” said Mr Ryder, noting that the joint agreements have also helped allay the fears of millions of workers, improved workplace safety and health, and paid sick leave and medical benefits.

Flexible working hours and leave provisions have been agreed to allow workers, especially women, to combine work with additional caregiving responsibilities associated with school closures or sick family members,” he said. “And temporary workers have their contracts extended or converted to permanent ones so they can keep their earnings.”

New hybrid reality

After two years of workplace upheaval caused by coronavirusAccording to the ILO Director-General, collective bargaining agreements have changed since the pandemic to reflect the new realities of work from home and other “hybrid” working methods.

“The agreements are already aimed at harmonizing equal opportunities, integrating workplace and teleworking practices, changing working hours to the right to disconnect, and addressing common concerns for workers and employers regarding cybersecurity and data privacy,” he said. in a call to more countries to start a dialogue between workers’ organizations and employers.

There are very good reasons to strengthen the institutions that encourage collective bargaining.,” he continued. “Employers’ and workers’ organizations must be strong to guarantee the legitimacy of agreed decisions, and in light of the proliferation of diverse forms of work, we need to ensure that the right to effective collective bargaining is effectively recognized for all workers in need of protection.”

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