OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY FOR INFORMAL WORKERS “Social Protection in Africa: Sharing Experiences on the Informal Economy” EC & AU Commission Capacity Building Workshop 10-11 March 2011, Nairobi, Kenya. Masuma Mamdani IHI. WIEGO.
FOR INFORMAL WORKERS
“Social Protection in Africa:
Sharing Experiences on the Informal Economy”
EC & AU Commission Capacity Building Workshop
10-11 March 2011, Nairobi, Kenya.
IE - the diversified set of economic activities, enterprises, and workers that are notregulated or protected by the state.
IE (or informal employment) includes:
Self-employment in informal enterprises: self-employed persons in small unregistered or unincorporated enterprises, including:
own account operators
unpaid contributing family workers
Wage employment in informal jobs: wage workers without social protection through their work who are employed by formal or informal firms (and their contractors), by households, or by no fixed employer, including:
non-standard employees of informal enterprises
non-standard employees of formal enterprises
casual or day labourers
industrial outworkers (also called homeworkers)
1. WIEGO promoted this expanded definition in collaboration with the ILO and the International Expert Group on Informal Sector
Statistics (the Delhi Group): it was endorsed by the International Conference of Labour Statisticians (ICLS) in 2003
2. T he elements of this expanded definition that were not included in the earlier ICLS 1993 definition of “informal sector” are in italics
Informal Sector: employment and production that takes place in small, unincorporated and unregistered enterprises ((ICLS 1993) .
Informal Employment: broader definition that includes informal employment insideand outside informal enterprises (whether carried out for formal sector enterprises or households (ICLS 2003)
What do we mean by ‘segmentation’?
Constraints exist which prevent individuals from moving into better employment opportunities (or improving the quality of existing employment)
What causes ‘segmentation’?
Discrimination, social norms, unequal wealth/assets, unpaid care responsibilities, lack of credit, lack of public goods/services, and more, etc
Why does ‘segmentation’ matter?
Reinforces existing patterns of poverty and social exclusion.
Issue of equity: gender, racial, caste segmentation.
Issue of basic rights and the choices available to individuals.
In summary: a social justice issue
SEGMENTATION OF THE INFORMAL ECONOMY: BY SEX, AVERAGE EARNINGS, AND POVERTY RISK
Poverty reduction is not possible without
reducing the risks of those who work in the informal economy.
There is a need to address the following:
Institutional “mismatch”: existing means of legal and social protections vs. reality of work today
Policy biases & Power imbalances: in favor of capital vs. labor + larger firms vs. micro firms + formal labor vs. informal labor
Downloading of risks: from lead firms -> suppliers -> intermediaries -> dependent workers and producers at the bottom of production and distribution chains
Key stakeholders: government, private sector, civil society (trade unions + MBOs of working poor + NGOs working on labor and employment issues)
Tripartite dialogues and negotiations: should include MBOs of working poor as well as trade unions, employer associations, and government
Multi-partite initiatives: initiatives involving multiple relevant stakeholders – such as Fair Trade and Ethical Trade initiativesand the Global Compact - should be encouraged and supported
Multi-partite reform processes: policy and legal reform processes should involve all relevant stakeholders including representatives of MBOs of the working poor
Evidence from a) value chain research and b) risk analysis of place of work and c) analyses of existing social protection schemes:
different elements of the ‘welfare mix’ may be more or less appropriate for different types of workers
Domestic workers SECTORS:
more potential for integrating into existing labour policy and legislation in line with ‘extend social protection’ campaign
Street and market vendors:
Focus on local government (not national government) policies
Encourage infrastructural service delivery to reduce risk AND increase productivity AND protect both informal workers and the publicSOCIAL PROTECTION: DIFFERENT STRATEGIES FOR DIFFERENT SECTORS
Industrial outworkers SECTORS:
Encourage infrastructural delivery to private homes
Extend employer/ owner-of-capital insurance to include private homes
Integrate social protection for informal workers into trade agreements/ codes of conduct
negotiate with municipalities/private sector for provision of safety equipment and reduction of hazards at the place of work
provide access for workers to local government/private sector social provision – health services and health insurance, training courses, educational bursariesSOCIAL PROTECTION: DIFFERENT STRATEGIES FOR DIFFERENT SECTORS
The integration of the working conditions and health status of poorer informal workers, and
The inclusion of informal work places, into the discipline and practice of occupational health and safety
Focus groups discussions, mobility mapping, time and motion studies, household/ enterprise interviews, photography, health checklists
Opportunities for strengthening the routine collection and monitoring of progress, structure and scale of the informal economy as well as pertinent OHS indicators (through targeted (and nested) questions in periodic surveys (HBS, LFS, DHS, census) at national, as well as at district/council level?
Coordination of ongoing data collection activities?
Strengthening the role of Municipalities or Councils at the Local Government (LG) level in the management of OHS - facilitate information as well as provide national and local decision makers with insights into the complexity of OHS affairs.
Many protective laws, policies, programmes & projects,
Involving multiple state and non-state actors
Scattered, ill-coordinated and the general impact of these has been limited.
It is therefore not just about building new systems and new programmes. It is also about assessing the effectiveness or rather weaknesses of existing systems and programmes.
The issue is not always of more money but better use of available resources
Bar operators on average spent around US$ 1,142 annually on water, refuse removal, use of toilets, cleaning equipment, employee health certificates & fire fighting equipment
How to make OHS more affordable for informal businesses?
Multi-disciplinary and inter-sectoral- addressed by a range of legislation under different departments / ministries and organisations.
more and stronger organizations of the working poor in the informal economy
representation of such organizations in relevant policy-making, rule-setting, and collective bargaining institutions and processes at all levels
improved labor force and other economic statistics that measure all economic units and workers - including their earnings + contribution to GDP
analysis and dissemination of these data to policy-makers, advocates of informal workers, and organizations of working poor in informal economy
research on the characteristics and situation of informal workers
documentation of promising examples of policy, regulator, legal, and programmatic interventions in support of informal workers
Legal and Policy Validity
legal identity and rights of informal workers as workers, asset holders, and citizens
legal recognition of the member-based organizations of informal workers
legal empowerment through inclusive legal and policy reform processes and appropriate legal and policy reforms
A LONG TERM PROCESS