as at 30 July 2015
for use with the Questionnaire to Members for the evaluation of the impact of
the ILO Declaration on Social Justice for a Fair Globalization, 2008
The Questionnaire to Members for the evaluation of the impact of the ILO Declaration on Social Justice for a Fair Globalization, 2008 was sent to Member States on 22 May 2015 with a request that their reply reach the ILO by 4 September 2015.
Question 4, which concerns consultations with representative organizations of employers and workers, is a standard question in ILO questionnaires and is thus not addressed in these FAQs.
For background on Questions 7 to 10, see the further sources of information relevant to the Social Justice Declaration and its implementation at www.ilo.org/sjd2008 .
Please address any queries by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org
1. What action(s) has your country taken to implement the ILO’s four strategic objectives in an integrated manner at the national level, and what challenges have been faced? Please describe, with specific examples, the impact of these actions including any progress achieved or lessons learned and the impact of ILO's role, if any. Please also include any action that has involved related economic and social policy or other coordination across ministries, institutions, or departments. (See Decl., Part II (B) (i), (ii), (v))
3. 2. What action(s) has your country taken to give effect to the Declaration at the regional level, and what challenges have been faced? Please describe, with specific examples, the impact of these actions including any progress achieved or lessons learned and the impact of ILO's role if any.
The four strategic objectives articulate the ILO’s constitutional mandate to achieve decent work:
v promote employment
v develop/enhance measures of social protection – social security and labour protection
v promote social dialogue and tripartism
v respect, promote and realize the fundamental principles and rights at work – both as rights and enabling conditions necessary to fully realize all of the strategic objectives.
What does it mean to implement the strategic objectives in an integrated manner?
Efforts to promote the strategic objectives are optimized when they are part of an integrated strategy due to their inseparable, interrelated and mutually supportive nature; conversely, failure to promote one harms progress towards the others. Integrated implementation occurs where progress toward one objective contributes to another objective. Under the Declaration, it is up to each Member to determine how to achieve the strategic objectives, while respecting their existing international obligations and the fundamental principles and rights at work and with due regard to priorities expressed by representative organizations of employers and workers.
What action(s) at national and regional level are relevant?
At national level, action that is relevant to report could involve:
v national planning frameworks/mechanisms between different ministries on policy and programme initiatives that integrate the objectives of the Decent Work Agenda
v establishing indicators or statistics to monitor and evaluate progress facilitates coordination as well as integrated evaluation of progress
v promotion of sustainable enterprises that have helped to grow productive jobs and income and reduce poverty and inequalities.
Ø Example: Boosting youth employment may be part of a national planning framework that aims to develop policies and programmes to analyse and match labour market gaps and enterprise needs with skills development initiatives. The reply in such a case could indicate how action is coordinated across ministries (e.g., labour, education, employment, industry) and budgetary allocations prioritized (e.g., finance ministry, legislature), and what role dialogue with business and unions plays.
Ø Example: Implementing the Global Jobs Pact adopted by the International Labour Conference in 2009 involves the integrated approach to decent work. A country may wish to report the advancement of coordination across ministries and with the social partners through its assessment of the impact of the global jobs crisis and policy responses to cope with it, including through ILO-sponsored Global Jobs Pact scans.
At regional level, action that is relevant to report could involve:
v coordination between regional mechanisms to build coherence across policies and operations relevant to employment, labour and other fields of economic and social cooperation, and evaluate their implementation and follow up
v Regional organizations address but are not limited to:
§ general international cooperation (e.g., African Union, Council of Europe, Gulf Cooperation Council, Arab League, Organization of American States, and subregional associations like ASEAN and SAARC and others)
§ economic integration (e.g., EU, CARICOM, ECOWAS, MERCOSUR, SADC and others)
§ development financing (e.g., Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, Islamic Development Bank and others)
Ø Example: The Heads of State and Government at the Sixth Summit of the Americas called for public policies that promote decent work, economic growth, income growth and access to education, health care and housing in order to combat poverty, inequality and social exclusion and achieve sustainable development with social justice in the Americas. How a country has contributed to the implementation of these commitments through the inter-American organizations and institutions, and the Summit Implementation Review Group would be relevant to a reply to Question 2.
What kind of impact would be useful to report?
Examples of impact could include country-specific forms of progress to:
reduce inequalities and advance equality
advance full employment
raise standards of living
achieve a minimum living wage
extend social security to provide a basic income to all in need
achieve effective social dialogue and harmonious labour relations
realize the fundamental principles and rights at work
Ø Example: Indicators in a country’s national planning framework might aim to: reduce poverty, increase labour force participation rates, create jobs, or promote sustainable inclusion and economic growth through specific targets involving women, indigenous peoples, youth, and vulnerable groups. Results reported from policies and programs, including budgetary allocations, which contributed to advancing more than one strategic objective at a time, could show relevant impact.
Ø Example: Improved legislation and enforcement, particularly across strategic objectives, can contribute to an integrated approach to decent work. Impact could be reported, for example, where enhanced occupational safety and health measures were reported to facilitate increased social protection coverage due to diminished sickness and occupational injury frequency.
3. What steps has your country taken to achieve increasing coverage of each of the strategic objectives, including through a review of the situation regarding the ratification and implementation of ILO instruments? Please include specifically in your reply the core labour standards and instruments that are significant from the viewpoint of governance (see the Declaration, Part II (B) (iii) and its Follow-up, note 1).
How does Question 3 of the Questionnaire differ from articles 19 or 22 questionnaires?
Question 3 seeks information on how the country bears in mind the complementarities between the strategic objectives when ratifying or implementing ILO instruments, in contrast to questions on instruments specific to a single objective.
How do international labour standards contribute to an integrated approach to decent work?
International labour standards guide countries in their efforts to achieve decent work objectives by setting out relevant obligations and rights, and methods to fulfill them. The Declaration’s integrated approach to decent work is facilitated by a country’s ratification or implementation of the ILO instruments that progressively increase coverage of each strategic objective.
Ø Example: Giving effect to one ILO Convention helps to achieve progress toward a particular strategic objective, which may advance progress toward other strategic objectives. For example, extension of social security measures under the Social Protection Floors Recommendation, 2012 (No. 202) can contribute to realizing fundamental principles and rights at work by helping to prevent conditions that lead to the vulnerability that exposes people to forced and child labour.
5. What steps has your country taken to ensure coordination between the action you have taken under the Declaration and the positions your country has taken in other relevant international or multilateral forums? Please describe, with specific examples, the impact of this coordination and indicate the international forums and organizations concerned (see the Declaration, Part II (B) (iv)).
Which international organizations are significant to consider in replying to Question 5?
Most international organizations’ mandates aim to promote sustainable development and prosperity through various means that interact in practice to some degree. Such organizations include but are not limited to the United Nations (including UNDP) and UN specialized agencies; the World Bank and International Monetary Fund; the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, and the World Trade Organization. The Decent Work Agenda can only be achieved to the extent that relevant policies and programmes of these institutions work effectively with one another and with integrated approaches to decent work in the countries they serve. The positions that member States take in relevant policy debates in these institutions can significantly assist in building policy coherence for decent work, both within the international community and between international and national levels of effort.
What kind of action in international organizations and multilateral forums is relevant?
The Declaration’s integrated approach calls for coordination across different ministries at national level when they represent the country’s various positions that affect one or more of the strategic objectives – e.g., policy positions on economic growth that can affect employment promotion. Positions that promote the international community’s recognition of decent work can contribute to an enabling environment on the ground for efforts to achieve decent work.
What is meant by “multilateral forums”?
Multilateral forums refer to various groupings of Member States that interact through dialogue on a regular basis to inform international policy making. Common examples would include but are not limited to such groupings as the,G7, G20, Group of 77, and BRICS.
Ø Example: Coordination across organizations and forums for an integrated approach to decent work could involve mechanisms for effective consultation among concerned ministries and with social partners to ensure consistency in positions taken on issues that affect decent work (e.g., social protection reduction as a means of financial austerity).
Ø Example: In 2016, the international community will start to tackle the post-2015 UN sustainable development agenda which will further highlight the need for system-wide policy coordination and coherence. It would be useful to include a country’s positions in support of an integrated approach to decent work, illustrated in the precursor UN Millennium Development Goals and in the post-2015 agenda.
6. Please provide information on how your country has collaborated with other ILO Members, bilaterally or at multilateral levels, in efforts to give effect to the principles and objectives of the Declaration. Please describe, with specific examples, the impact of this collaboration including through any relevant ILO role (see the Declaration, Part II (B)(vi) and (vii) and Part II (A) (iv)).
Under the Declaration, Member States may cooperate to achieve an integrated approach to the decent work strategic objectives by, among other things: sharing national and regional good practice: providing support to other Members’ efforts in so far as resources permit, and acting jointly within the framework of bilateral or multilateral agreements.
The ILO may play a role, upon request, by assisting each Member involved, or by facilitating the Members concerned, including in knowledge sharing, technical cooperation, or advisory services to reach their common aims compatible with the principles of the Declaration.
sharing national and regional good practice could include whether and how the country shared successful initiatives reported in reply to Questions 1 or 2:
providing support to other Members’ efforts could involve arrangements that help promote the strategic objectives which are established between or among Members for financial or technical support
bilateral or multilateral agreements that aim to achieve decent work strategic objectives could include systems for trade or investment preferences, free trade agreements, bilateral investment treaties, and programs for development assistance.