Activists call for a virtual summit with finance and labour ministers to save economy

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Employers’ and workers’ call for a virtual summit with finance and labour ministers to coordinate global response to Covid-19 

The International Organisation of Employers (IOE) and the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) are calling for an immediate virtual summit with finance and labour ministers to improve coherence on economic relief efforts in response to Covid-19.

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Global Health Crisis

Covid-19 is threatening the lives and likelihoods of people across the globe. The pandemic is a global health crisis, with catastrophic impact on economies, labour markets and communities. Ambitious and inclusive collaboration is more important than ever to minimise the health, economic and employment challenges and to prepare for a strong revival.

IOE and ITUC welcomed the G20 commitments as set out int their recent Leaders’ Statement and urge that they be implemented now. IOE and ITUC want UN agencies and international financial institutions to work with employers’ and workers’ organisations to design and implement responses that provide security for business and workers to avoid social devastation and, eventually, revive the global economy rapidly.

Virtual Summit With Finance And Labour Ministers: Efforts To Minimize Trade Disruptions

IOE President Erol Kiresepi outlines some concrete measures employers and trade unions wants ministers to pursue immediately: “Together with ITUC, we want rapid response programmes that give businesses access to flexible and efficient low-cost short- and medium-term loans now. We also want immediate efforts put in place to minimise disruptions to trade and global supply chains while also protecting public health.”

ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow adds: “We, together with IOE, want employers’ and workers’ to be given access to paid sick leave, income support and social protection as a matter of priority. We want governments to support social security and extended temporary unemployment programmes to make sure the most vulnerable do not slip through the cracks in this crisis.”

Employers’ and workers’ play a key role in addressing the impact of the crisis. At national and international level, they must be fully involved in the negotiation, implementation and follow-up of the crisis response. IOE and ITUC reiterate the call for a joint labour and finance ministerial with their participation to strengthen coherence and collective action.