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CBCI labour office demands justice for workers

Nov. 5, 2013

The labor office of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India has demanded the Delhi government to do justice to the laborers in the unorganized sectors in the city. In a joint statement, Bishop Oswald Lewis and Archbishop Kuriakose Bhranikulankara of Faridabad said that all the citizens in the country have the right to decent work. Bishop Oswald Lewis is the chairman of the CBCI office of labor and Archbishop Kuriakose Bhranikulankara is the chairman of the northern region commission for labour. They also asked the Church to take active steps to combat bonded labor in the country. “It is a national shame that in the city we see child labor so evident and rampant than any other place in the world,” they said in the statement.

The bishops' statement came during the conclusion of the national convention of CBCI Office for Labour and Workers’ India Federation (WIF) in New Delhi on Oct 31. They noted that in 1998, the 86th International Labor Conference (ILO) adopted the Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. This declaration contains four fundamental policies, including the right of workers to associate freely and bargain collectively, the end of forced and compulsory labour, the end of child labour and the end of unfair discrimination among workers. The ILO asserts that its members have an obligation to work toward fully respecting these principles, embodied in relevant ILO Convention. The Declaration makes it clear that these rights are universal and that they apply to all people in all States - regardless of the level of economic development.

It particularly mentions groups with special needs, including the unemployed and migrant workers. It recognizes that economic growth alone is not enough to ensure equity, social progress and to eradicate poverty.

Source: UCAN

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