THEME: SUSTAINABLE JOBS, INCOMES, SOCIAL PROTECTION FOR ALL THROUGH SOCIAL DIALOGUE IN THE WAKE OF COVID 19
JUSTIFICATION OF THE THEME
Covid 19 is a health issue but its impact has devastating effects on workers, employers and the economy. In addition, Covid 19 is non-discriminatory but its impact is, since the poor, women and youth especially those at the lower end of the wage blanket and in the informal economy suffers the most.
Currently we have seen employers and workers feeling the most pressure. The economy is coming to a standstill as most companies are slowing down production while others are completely shutting down. Employers are becoming less capable to manage their wage bills while workers are feeling the pressure to manage their daily welfare costs.
Workers in different sectors are receiving reduced wages or salary due to the slowdown of business. In some case some are being retrenched while others are being sent on annual leave without pay. Workers in the informal economy have been made more vulnerable to poverty and Covid-19.
Indeed, covid-19 is a threat to decent work and sustainable incomes. As MCTU we acknowledge the difficult times employers are passing through, however we believe that as partners through social dialogue we can amicably reach at an agreement on how best to manage the negative impacts of Covid 19.
What we want is for workers’ rights to be protected and promoted, at the same time while employers’ view on how to manage Covid 19 is respected and considered.
We believe through social dialogue we can together contribute towards achieving sustainable jobs and income.
In addition, the need for a universal social protection system or a fund is undebatable, hence MCTU recommends that as social partners not only the government we need to fast track and find ways on how we can put in place a universal social protection fund.
It is against the above background that during this year labour day, MCTU will focus on how we can achieve sustainable Jobs, Incomes and social protection for all.