Role of International Labour Organisation (ILO) in Social Security

By Abhishek Jain |Updated : November 10th, 2020

The International Labour Organization is a United Nations agency whose mandate is to advance social and economic justice through setting international labour standards. Founded in October 1919 under the League of Nations, it is the first and oldest specialised agency of the UN.

Role of International Labour Organization (ILO) in Social Security

The ILO was created in 1919 as part of the "Treaty of Versailles" that ended in World War I to ensure social justice for people of work. It became a specialized agency of the newly formed united nations after the second world war and today has a membership of 186 states that continues to grow. The tripartite structure is unique to the ILO where representatives from the government, employers and employees openly debate and create labour standards.

The ILO received the Nobel Peace prize in 19 69 and today is recognized as the world of authority on the world of work. Its impact has seen key moments in history. Headquartered in Geneva with over 40 new offices around the globe, the ILO is unique amongst international organizations, where not only governments but employers and workers as well have equal voices. They work together to create Labour standards and qualities that impact today’s global economy. In 2008, the ILO adopted a Declaration on Social Justice for fair globalization to respond to our world faced with the economic crisis. It made decent work the core of ILO policy and with the decent work agenda into practice. The Decent Work Agenda has forced to teach objectives:

  • Promote decent employment opportunities
  • Enhance social protection
  • Strengthen tripartism and social dialogue
  • Guarantee Fundamental principles and rights at work

Decent work is Goal 8 of the UN’s 2030 agenda for Sustainable Development and is an integral part of all 17 sustainable development goals. The ILO’s decent work agenda is a central contribution to peace and security to sustainable, economic growth and the dignity of men or women. Globalization disruptive technologies, rising inequalities. The world of work is changing faster than ever before. The ILO brings nearly 100 years of knowledge, experience and achievement as it considers the future of work.      

The ILO has integrated many of its existing technical projects into five flagship programs, designed to enhance the efficiency and impact of development cooperation with constituents on a global scale. The ILO’s large scale development cooperation programs have an integrated model for delivering high value and high-quality services and activities to ILO constituents, with a focus on ensuring strategic and sustainable development goals. This approach ensures that the ILO’s development cooperation portfolio is both efficient and priorities of constituents.

Five flagship programs for this year include:

  • Better Work
  • The International Program on the elimination of child and forced labour (IPEC)
  • Occupational Safety and Health: Global Action for Protection (OSH-GAP)
  • Jobs for peace and resilience
  •  Social Protection floors for all (SPF)

The International Labour Organization also releases reports for tracking the social work structure and opportunities given to the workers world-wide.

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