Barbados, having benefited significantly from its association with the International Labour Organization (ILO), is lauding that organization on marking its 100th anniversary and continuing the thrust for social justice and decent work.
The praise comes in a message from Minister of Labour and Social Partnership Relations, Colin Jordan, that celebrates the achievements of the ILO, the only tripartite agency of the United Nations bringing together government, worker and employer representatives since its creation in 1919 under the Versailles Peace Treaty.
“Barbados lauds the involvement of the ILO in programmes which are aimed at addressing the effects of climate change, as well as the recognition that the matter is important to small, developing nations such as ours.
The fostering of an enabling environment for the creation of green jobs and the preparation of the workforce for the decent employment opportunities in the new technology-driven economy are two current areas of focus for the organization,” Minister Jordan said.
Noting that the country currently sits on the Governing Body of the ILO, the Labour Minister said this allows us to actively participate in decision-making processes and ensures that the English-speaking Caribbean and Cuba have a voice.
While further recognizing the ILO’s contribution to Barbados, he stressed that, to date, it had facilitated our participation in numerous training and developmental programmes that have enhanced capacity building.
“Areas of benefit include training on: labour inspection; conciliation; the management of labour statistics; and assistance with the reform of labour legislation. As recently as August 2019, we partnered with the ILO to host a tripartite five-day workshop on the conduct of the conciliation process. During the recently concluded annual International Labour Conference in Geneva, Barbados made a sterling contribution to the discussions on, and the final adoption of, a new Convention on Violence and Harassment. This exemplified our commitment to the ideals of the ILO and has paved the way for further collaboration,” he outlined.
Minister Jordan also acknowledged that Government was proud of the contribution of two of its revered sons and trade unionists, National Hero the Right Excellent Sir Frank Walcott and Sir Roy Trotman, who had been in the forefront of some of the leading reforms introduced by the ILO within the last three decades.
Further praising the ILO, he added: “We remain committed to the ideals of the ILO, and recognize that constant enhancement of the tripartite framework, a hallmark of the organization, is even more critical at this juncture of our development.
As a member of the ILO, we will continue to build on the strong foundation that has been laid for the governance of worker-management relations, as we seek to advance social justice and promote decent work.
“The Government and people of Barbados highly commend the ILO on reaching its 100th anniversary.”
With 187 member states today, the ILO has the responsibility of developing international labour standards, policies and programmes aimed at improving worker-management co-operation.
The 100th anniversary is being celebrated under the theme Advancing Social Justice, Promoting Decent Work.