PEPDEL Promoting the Employability and Employment of People with Disabilities through Effective Legislation

The ILO works in partnership with Irish Aid, the Government of Ireland’s programme of development assistance, to create greater opportunities for women and men, including people with disabilities, to secure decent work and income.

PEPDEL aims to support the review and reform of disability-related training in employment laws and policies, and their effective implementation in selected countries of East and Southern Africa, Asia and the Pacific. In East Asia it is active in China, Thailand and Viet Nam (2009-2011). It involves governments, social partners and organizations of women and men with disabilities in activities and events linked to the review or development of disability-related legislation and policies. In addition, PEPDEL seeks to collaborate with national training agencies, employment services and university law facilities to ensure a commitment to including a disability perspective in their programmes and services and curricula.

PEPDEL China, Thailand and Viet Nam
Timeline 2009 – 2011

What’s New

Disability in the Workplace: Company Practices

Media Guidelines for The Portrayal of Disability

Coming Up

Disability Champions Programme

Advocacy and public information


Decent Work for People with Disabilities - Count us in

Fact sheets

Promoting the Employability and Employment of People with Disabilities through Effective Legislation (PEPDEL)

Inclusion of People with Disabilities in China

Inclusion of People with Disabilities in Thailand

Inclusion of People with Disabilities in Viet Nam

Recent Project Activities

Disability Equality Training for Trade Unions in Thailand

For further information, please contact:

Liu Chunxiu
National Programme Coordinator, ILO Beijing

Emanuela Pozzan
Sub-Regional Coordinator
Disability, East Asia
ILO/Irish Aid Partnership Programme

Viet Nam
Pham Thi Cam Ly
National Programme Coordinator, ILO Hanoi


The garment sector is Lao PDR’s largest manufacturing employer and makes a significant contribution to annual national exports. Around 30,000 workers are employed by about 60 exporting factories and 45 subcontracting firms. Garment workers are mostly women under 25. They tend to see the work as temporary, generating extra income for their families and improving their own prospects. Most have limited a limited understanding of their contractual rights and obligations, and working conditions in the sector are often difficult, with long hours and compulsory overtime. Garment sector employers identify labour supply as their most significant constraint. For example, some report that only half their workers stay beyond three years. Firms find it hard to improve productivity while regularly losing experienced workers, and the sector remains stuck in a cycle of low productivity and high staff turnover.


The project aims to improve working conditions, productivity and competitiveness in the Lao garment manufacturing sector by strengthening the national labour inspection system to ensure compliance with national labour laws in line with international labour standards. The project will also improve workers’ and employers’ understanding of labour law and their role in ensuring good working conditions, while empowering factoring managers and employees to design and implement workplace improvement plans.

To achieve these objectives the project will work at three levels to:

• Improve the capacity of the labour inspection system to achieve compliance, using up-to-date ILO tools and methodologies and incorporate lessons learned from other labour inspectorates in the region;
• Develop and implement an awareness-raising strategy for workers and employers so that they are aware of their rights and obligations under the labour law; and,
• Implement a targeted compliance strategy for the garment sector.

Project Activities and Outputs

The project is organised around three main outcomes, with a set of activities designed to achieve each outcome.

Outcome 1: The capacity of the labour inspection system in Lao PDR is improved so that it can effectively undertake labour inspection functions for the benefit of workers and employers in the garment sector.

• The development of a national labour inspection plan setting out common objectives, standardised working procedures and key performance indicators
• The design and adoption of labour inspection tools to improve the ability of inspectors to carry out inspection visits and to collect and analyse data
• Working with the Government and social partners towards the ratification of ILO Convention No 81 on Labour Inspection

Outcome 2: Workers and employers are aware of their rights and obligations and understand how to achieve workplace compliance

• The production and dissemination of awareness-raising materials for employers and workers on national labour laws and ILO fundamental principles and rights at work
• The development and use of training materials on workers’ rights, industrial relations and productivity

Outcome 3: Factories improve working conditions and productivity through workplace cooperation using the project advisory and training services

• The creation of workplace improvement committees with worker representatives freely elected by factory workers
• Enterprise assessments to determine how to achieve compliance with national and international standards, with assistance from the labour inspectorate
• Workplace improvement plans are developed, agreed and implemented based on the assessment findings.

For further information please contact:

Ms Medeleine Jones
Chief Technical Adviser
C/O Ministry of Labour and Social Welfare
Department of Labour Management
4th floor, Pangkham Road, Vientiane, Lao PDR
Tel.: +856 20 7853 6636