INTERNATIONAL TRADE UNION CONFEDERATION
New York: ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow to Call on UN Member States to Prioritize Employment-centred Policies as Key to Achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)
Brussels, 17 September 2010 (ITUC OnLine): A three-day summit on the MDGs opens today in the General Assembly at the UN Headquarters in New York . Over 100 heads of state will gather to adopt an 81-paragraph MDG Summit Outcome Document which aims to reverse the trends in increasing poverty and hunger, exacerbated by the financial crisis. The document agrees to measures to accelerate progress towards achieving the MDG targets of significantly reducing poverty, hunger and unemployment, of addressing lack of access to education, health care and social protection, and of reversing climate degradation by 2015.
“We are pleased that the Draft Outcome Document before the Heads of State for adoption places employment, decent work and social protection at the heart of policies to achieve the MDGs, and commits governments to implementing the ILO Global Jobs Pact”, said Sharan Burrow.
Burrow, who is leading a 20-Member strong trade union delegation to the summit will speak to these issues at a Heads of State Round Table on 21 September. She will stress the need for accountability mechanisms to hold governments accountable to the commitments made in the Outcome Document. Chief among these, and in the context of employment-centred policies, is ensuring that “employers and workers’ representatives” [para 70(d)of Outcome Document] are indeed involved in decision-making.
“Achieving inclusive labour markets through tripartite consultations is key to overcoming the decent work deficit,” Burrow will be telling heads of state. “This means focusing on the groups most affected by poverty or social exclusion, such as young, unskilled or older workers, temporary and part-time workers, women and migrant workers.”
Of equal importance is the need for innovative financing for the MDGs. Here, Burrow will stress the need to go further than the proposals of the Outcome Document, and to agree to implement a Financial Transactions Tax (FTT). This has the potential to raise considerable resources to finance poverty eradication, as well as climate change adaptation and mitigation measures.
The ITUC Statement http://www.ituc-csi.org/IMG/pdf/No_33_-_Annexe_3_-_ITUC_Statement_to_September_Summit_2010_on_the_MDGs.pdf , which contains a comprehensive set of proposals for achieving the MDGs, will be made available to participants at the Summit .
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