International Labour Standards on Social policy

The ILO Constitution, in the Declaration of Philadelphia, states that "all human beings, irrespective of race, creed or sex, have the right to pursue both their material well-being and their spiritual development in conditions of freedom and dignity, of economic security and equal opportunity" and that the fulfilment of this objective "must constitute the central aim of national and international policy". Social policy formulated through dialogue between the social partners has the best chance of achieving the aims agreed upon by the international community. Relevant ILO standards provide a framework for creating social policies which ensure that economic development benefits all those who participate in it.

Selected relevant ILO instruments

  • Social Policy (Basic Aims and Standards) Convention, 1962 (No. 117) - [ratifications]
    The convention sets forth the general principle that all policies shall be primarily directed to the well-being and development of the population and to the promotion of its desire for social progress. Furthermore, the improvement of standards of living shall be regarded as the principal objective in the planning of economic development. It also provides additional requirements concerning migrant workers, agricultural producers, independent producers and wage earners, minimum wage-fixing and payment of wages, non-discrimination, and education and vocational training.
  • Further relevant instruments