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Environmental issues, instability may undermine labor — ILO

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THE International Labor Organization (ILO) has found that 93% of the poor in the Asia-Pacific are exposed to environmental degradation and political instability, creating difficulties for the labor sector.

“Conflicts have had a negative impact on fundamental rights at work, as there are many instances when freedom of association and collective bargaining, may be restricted by states during conflicts and disasters,” ILO Philippines Director Khalid Hassan said in the Trade Regional Forum on Decent Work for Peace and Resilience held at Crown Plaza on Tuesday.

In the Asia-Pacific, ILO reported in a statement on Tuesday that “about 93% of people in extreme poverty live in countries that are environmentally vulnerable, politically fragile or both.”

They also estimated that 1.5 billion live in countries going through “fragility and armed violence” and an additional 200 million people are affected by all kinds of onset disasters.

“Fragility, conflict, and disaster undermine people’s livelihoods and create decent-work deficits. If not addressed, these problems can lead to increased poverty, inequality, and social unrest,” ILO said.

Mr. Hassan said that both conflicts and disasters make countries experience “untold hardships including destruction of workplaces, increase in unemployment, separation of families, and displacement of people.”

He added that such crises in vulnerable countries experience also “dislocate” their labor markets.

“This leads to decreased protections against discrimination and increases in the use of forced labor and child labor,” he said.

ILO said that its Recommendation 205 on Employment, Decent Work for Peace and Resilience emphasize “prevention, recovery, peace, and resilience” by creating more employment and decent jobs.” — Gillian M. Cortez





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