ILO calls on member states to eliminate violence, harassment at work

ILO calls on member states to eliminate harassment at work

ILO calls on member states to eliminate violence, harassment at work

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) is calling on its member states to ratify Convention 190 in a bid to stamp out violence and harassment in workplaces.

ILO Director-General Gilbert Houngbo made the call ahead of the 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence, which is set to kick off on November 25.

"As I join the 16 Days of Activism for the elimination of violence against women and girls, I call upon all Member States to ratify Convention 190," said Houngbo in a video message.

"Together, we can create a more inclusive world of work and ensure social justice for all. Let us unite to stop this violence before it begins."

ILO Convention No. 190

Houngbo said the ILO Convention No. 190 "grants everyone the right to a violence-free work environment."

The Convention 190, or the Violence and Harassment Convention, aims to protect workers and other persons in the world of work, including interns, apprentices, volunteers, jobseekers, job applicants, among others, according to the ILO.

"Each Member which ratifies this Convention shall respect, promote, and realise the right of everyone to a world of work free from violence and harassment," the Convention states.

It added that each member shall adopt an "inclusive, integrated, and gender-responsive approach for the prevention and elimination of violence and harassment in the world of work."

The convention is currently in force in 22 nations, out of the 36 countries that ratified it so far.

Violence, harassment at work

Houngbo made the remarks as he revealed that one in five people in employment faces violence and harassment in their working lives.

"And three out of five, mostly women, endure it repeatedly," he said in the same video message.

Violence and harassment against women and girls know no borders, according to the ILO director-general, not even in the workplace.

"We can prevent this. We can act before it happens," he said.

Houngbo said this means investing in preventing violence and harassment against women and girls, inside and outside the workplace, as well as rooting out discrimination everywhere.

"Only by acting together can we make a difference," the ILO-director general said.

The 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence is an annual international campaign that begins on November 25, the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

It will run until Human Rights Day on December 10, according to the UN Women organisation.

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