GATINEAU, QC, June 17, 2019 /CNW/ - As a founding member of the International Labour Organization (ILO), Canada is proud to celebrate the organization's 100th anniversary. The Government of Canada continues to promote and uphold the ILO's decent work agenda, and is committed to combatting labour exploitation and promoting strong labour inspection systems.
To this end, Canada has ratified the ILO's Protocol 29 on Forced Labour and Convention 81 on Labour Inspection.
Protocol 29, the Protocol to The Forced Labour Convention, 1930, provides specific guidance on how to eliminate all forms of forced labour, including human trafficking. Convention 81, the Labour Inspection Convention, 1947, requires governments to establish a labour inspection system, with an emphasis on prevention and enforcement, and outlines the powers of and the code of ethics for labour inspectors.
The ratification of Protocol 29 and Convention 81 is part of the Government's plan to address labour exploitation, foster safe and fair workplaces, and better protect millions of people at home and abroad.
These efforts include the Government's ongoing actions to eliminate workplace violence and harassment, both domestically with the recent adoption of Bill C-65, and globally, in current ILO negotiations to develop new international labour standards to prevent these unacceptable behaviours. Changes were also made to the Canada Labour Code to improve the recovery of employees' unpaid wages and help create work environments where their rights are protected.
Additionally, the Government has recently established a toll-free National Human Trafficking hotline, and a new national strategy on human trafficking is currently under development. The Government is also currently consulting key stakeholders to determine what else can be done to address child labour, as well as other forms of labour exploitation, in supply chains.
"The Government of Canada is a strong supporter of the International Labour Organization and their commitment to promoting decent work around the world. Over the last one hundred years, the ILO has achieved so much in the fight for workers' rights, and we will continue to work together for equality, inclusion and fairness at home, abroad, in our workplaces and everywhere else."
– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour
"Our government knows that we cannot build a stronger economy, or grow Canada's middle class, without workers and the unions that represent them. By ratifying the International Labour Organization's Protocol 29 on Forced Labour and Convention 81 on Labour Inspection, Canada is demonstrating its commitment to multilateralism and fundamental rights at work. We will continue to work with our partners at the International Labour Organization to improve the lives of millions of workers, at home and around the world."
– The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs
- Effective April 1, 2019, new compliance and enforcement measures under Part III (Labour Standards) of the Canada Labour Code are improving the recovery of employees' unpaid wages in federally regulated workplaces and help create work environments where their rights are respected. The amendments provide new powers to inspectors such as the ability to assess wages owed based on available evidence, as well as to order employers to conduct internal audits. An administrative fee on payment orders was also introduced, thus creating a stronger incentive for employers to comply through voluntary means.
- Bill C-65 will strengthen provisions in the Code by putting into place one comprehensive approach that takes the full spectrum of harassment and violence into consideration, and expand the coverage to cover parliamentary workplaces, including staff of Parliament Hill. Bill C-65 will come into force in 2020.
SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada
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