The ILO commits to promoting cooperatives and social and solidarity economy in its Declaration for the Future of Work

21 Jun 2019

During the 108th International Labour Conference on the occasion of the Centenary of the International Labour Organization (ILO), the ‘ILO Centenary Declaration for the Future of Work, 2019’ has been adopted today. The International Cooperative Alliance (ICA) welcomes the Declaration and the recognition of cooperatives and social and solidarity economy in the final version.

The ICA, holding an observer status at the ILO, followed the negotiations of the Committee of the Whole elaborating the Declaration during the International Labour Conference period.

The text states as follows: “The ILO must direct its efforts to (…) supporting the role of the private sector as a principal source of growth and job creation by promoting an enabling environment for entrepreneurship and sustainable enterprises, as well as cooperatives and the social and solidarity economy in order to generate decent work, productive employment and improved living standards for all''.

The Declaration recognizes that in these times of “transformative change in the world of work” and “persistent inequalities”, “it is imperative to act with urgency to seize the opportunities and address the challenges to shape a fair, inclusive and secure future of work for all”.

Having the ICA committed itself to “respect, promote, and act diligently to support the fundamental tenets of decent work” through the ICA Declaration on Decent Work and Against Harassment, we welcome the ILO’s commitment “to a world free of violence and harassment”.

The ICA furthermore acclaims the ILO engagement to developing “its human-centred approach to the future of work, which puts workers’ rights and the needs, aspirations and rights of all people at the heart of economic, social and environmental policies”. We share an identical view, as the basis of what defines a cooperative is the voluntary union of persons to achieve common economic, social, and cultural needs and aspirations in a jointly-owned and democratically controlled enterprise.


"The cooperative movement welcomes the final Declaration and wishes to highlight the fruitful collaboration with the ILO since its creation. As responsible for providing employment to 10% of the world's employed population, cooperatives are crucial actors for building a better future today”, has declared the President of the ICA, Ariel Guarco.


This historic text has been adopted on the occasion of the ILO 100 years of existence. The result is the outcome of two intense weeks of negotiations between governments, trade unions and employers’ organizations from the whole world. The ICA wishes to express its appreciation for the work carried out by the ILO’s Cooperatives Unit in supporting the role of cooperatives for the future of work.

The approval of this Declaration precedes the ILO-ICA Conference on the Future of Work on Monday 24 June, where a new ILO-ICA Memorandum of Understanding will be signed.


Caption: ILO / Crozet - Pouteau


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