international news

8/6/2015

REGIONAL DIRECTOR OF THE ILO FOR LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN COMMENDED THE IMPLEMENTATION OF UOCRA SMART CARD I AM A BUILDING WORKER

Interview with Télam news agency

  • REGIONAL DIRECTOR OF THE ILO FOR LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN COMMENDED THE IMPLEMENTATION OF UOCRA SMART CARD I AM A BUILDING WORKER

Juan Zalazar and other ILO officers stressed the socio-labor improvements in Argentina and praised the implementation of the Smart Card “;I am a Building Worker”

•	Geneva, 8 June Télam, special-envoys.- Officials of the International Labour Organization (ILO) today enhanced the improvement of some indicators over the past decade in Argentina and the importance of the country to the region, specially due to its social conquests and for his leadership in the fight against child labour.
•	The new head of the ILO Country Office in Buenos Aires, the Brazilian Paulo Furtado, said in an interview with Télam that despite high levels of informality registered in all the countries since the 2008 crisis, in the Argentina of the last twelve years "this figure decreased".
•	"There was a significant increase in registered employment, although informality has been set at 33 percent. Several mechanisms to make progress on this issue, were created although there remains a hard core where it is very complicated to generate formalization, such as rural employment, since organization is still missing in the sector, in the same way that SMEs, where you have to deepen social protection", he said.
•	Mr. Furtado highlighted that Argentina is "a leading nation in the fight against child labour", although he acknowledged that a part of that scourge still "remains hidden and it is difficult to get to the core".
•	In this regard, he said that this task is coordinated from the national, provincial and municipal policies which "is not easy because it involves many mechanisms, allocation of income, maternal care services, day care and schools".
•	"In Argentina, for some time now, there is a process of awareness on the problem of child labour. The country is very well because it has laws, institutions and provincial commitments, even cutting-edge resources and public policies against trafficking in children and people that exist and are really strong and deep. It is only required greater coordination", he said.
•	The ILO officer, who participates in the 104th Conference in Geneva, pointed out that there are sectors that still "didn't understand that child labor engages productive work" and asserted that the country has "everything to be the first to eradicate it permanently, since the numbers are falling down".
•	"There is still a hard core that does not see society as a problem because it gets used to. And the exploited themselves sometimes refuse to fail to fulfil these tasks because they have no choice. It is not possible to trivialise the issue. There is always an adult behind child labour. A child in the street is a risk because there are perversities, social pathologies, violence and sexual abuse. But Argentina also has made progress in its Code, by criminalizing the recruitment of child labour," said Furtado.
•	In addition, he argued for public campaigns on the issue so as "judges and prosecutors understand what it means" and claimed the relationship between the ILO Country Office and the National Registry of Workers and Agricultural Employers (RENATEA) to formalize employment in that sector and to fight against child and forced labour from "a large space of cooperation".
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•	Meanwhile, the new Regional Director of the Labor Agency for Latin America and the Caribbean, the Costa Rican Juan Salazar, underlined that for the continent "Argentina is a systemically important country by its weight, tradition and great strength".
•	"Many things were done very well there at the sectoral level" and, at the ILO, there is a feeling of gratitude for the support received during the years of the Argentine Government and its Minister of Labor, Carlos Tomada, since there was "a very important identification of values and ideas", summed up the economist in an interview with Télam.
•	The officer confirmed that there was "a very strong association" between Argentina and the ILO during these years and said he felt "impressed" during his recent trip to the country, "for what the trade union movement complied with".
•	Salazar provided as an example the Smart Card which Uocra gives its affiliates, a tool which is considered an avant-garde in systems of occupational registration via internet for the activity, which, in turn, allows employees to raise their working standard and facilitates banking usage.
•	In this regard, he stressed that with the card the nearly 400,000 Uocra members obtained "status and recognition for their skills".
•	The director of the Research Department of the tripartite labour body, Raymond Torres, stressed that over the last ten or twelve years the country improved "its situation on certain indicators and unemployment remained at a very reasonable level despite the crisis of 2008," as he said that it also improved "quality of employment, since the rate of informality decreased ".
•	The economist and head of the ILO team of researchers emphasized, in the interview with Télam, that the decrease in the rate of informality to 33 percent is "something to highlight, because there are not so many countries that have achieved this figure".
•	The researcher considered that it was based on "labour, social and inspection policies, in collective agreements and a real effort on domestic work which Argentina have been implementing during these years".
•	Finally, he praised programs of social protection to the most disadvantaged sectors, in particular after "the crisis of 2002, but also 2008, when such tools were used efficiently". (Télam).-

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