Gender Equality

A historic step towards greater protections for workers around the world

June 21, 2019

Canada’s unions join workers everywhere in celebrating today’s historic adoption of a new International Labour Organization (ILO) Convention and Recommendation addressing violence and harassment in the world of work.

After over a year of negotiations with governments, employers, and workers, the Centenary International Labour Conference adopted the new framework at its convention in Geneva.

“It is a historic day,” said CLC’s Secretary-Treasurer Marie Clarke Walker, who served as Worker Vice-Chair for the negotiations. “We set out to draft a standard that would stand the test of time, that would carry us forward into the next century of the ILO, and would meet the challenges of the future world of work.”

The ILO is a United Nations agency whose mandate is to advance social justice and promote decent work by setting international labour standards.

The ILO Convention and Recommendation set out clear policies, grounded in social dialogue and requiring an integrated, gender-responsive approach to the prevention and elimination of violence and harassment in the world of work. The Convention is legally binding, while the Recommendation provides advice.

“I truly believe what you have before you today are texts that we can all be proud of – instruments that are both ground-breaking and visionary, but also practical and actionable,” said Clarke Walker in a speech to delegates at the conference.

“Having a global minimum standard to prevent and address violence and harassment in the world of work will bring hope to millions of workers – hope that a world of work free from violence and harassment is possible,” she added.

Canada’s unions congratulate Clarke Walker and all of the participants in the standard-setting process.

“This is a great achievement,” said Hassan Yussuff, CLC President. “Now that we have secured this ground-breaking convention, we urge Canada to be among the first countries to ratify. We stand ready to ensure its effective implementation, so everyone can fully enjoy the right to work free from violence and harassment.”

Read the full text of the new Convention and Recommendation here.

  • Ending Discrimination
  • Political leaders must work together and fast-track Bill C-22 on Disability Benefits

    October 3, 2022
    Click to open the link
  • Gender Equality
  • To achieve gender equality, Canada’s decision makers must prioritize investments in care

    September 22, 2022
    Click to open the link
  • Trade and International Affairs
  • Labour 20 recommendations to G20 Labour and Employment Ministers

    September 14, 2022
    Click to open the link
  • Jobs, Economy and Environment
  • Labour Day: Worker power is key to a stronger middle class

    August 31, 2022
    Click to open the link
  • Workplace Health and Safety
  • Progress towards a world of work free of violence and harassment

    August 11, 2022
    Click to open the link
  • Jobs, Economy and Environment
  • Indigenous Peoples Day 2022: Honouring Indigenous cultures on June 21 and beyond

    June 21, 2022
    Click to open the link
  • Social Justice and Democracy
  • June 16 is International Domestic Workers’ Day

    June 16, 2022
    Click to open the link
  • Workplace Health and Safety
  • IDAHOTB: Canada’s unions call for an end to violence and harassment

    May 17, 2022
    Click to open the link