Labor Organization Says Worker Hours Globally Are Falling Sharply

Organization says worker hours globally are falling sharply

June 30 (UPI) — A global workers’ rights organization said Tuesday that employee hours have tumbled 14 percent in the second quarter of this year because of coronavirus restrictions, the equivalent of 400 million full-time jobs.

The International Labor Organization reported the total proved well above the 10.7 percent reduction in worker hours expected.

“The new figures reflect the worsening situation in many regions over the past weeks, especially in developing economies,” the organization said.

The ILO said the biggest losses regionally were found in the Americas at 18.3 percent, Europe and Central Asia at 13.9 percent, Asia and the Pacific at 13.5 percent, the Arab States at 13.2 percent, and Africa at 12.1percent.

Guy Ryder, the director-general of the ILO, said the organization will hold a virtual summit on the coronavirus and its impact on global employment next week.

“I hope that governments, workers and employers will use this opportunity to present and listen to innovative ideas, discuss lessons learned and come up with concrete plans to work together to implement a recovery that is job-rich, inclusive, equitable and sustainable,” Ryder said in a statement. “We must all step up to the challenge of building a better future of work.”

The organization said the job losses have hurt female workers disproportionately.

“The severe impact of COVID-19 on women workers relates to their over-representation in some of the economic sectors worst affected by the crisis, such as accommodation, food, sales and manufacturing,” the ILO said. “Globally, almost 510 million or 40 percent of all employed women work in the four most affected sectors, compared to 36.6 percent of men.”

Ryder said the decision made by countries today will have long-ranging effects to the end of the decade.

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