While deficit reduction and growth may be the current priority of most governments, workers rights must also not be forgotten. That was the clear message from Juan Somavia, the Director-General of the International Labour Organization, to MEPs in Strasbourg on Wednesday.
“Given the values of the European Union, it’s a moment in which the respect for workers rights and the conditions of work highlight one basic thing that we know: that the quality of work defines the quality of a society. They also see the financial crisis, but they say: look, sometimes I have the feeling that there are banks that are too big to fail, and that we are people that are too small to matter.”
The warning by the ILO chief echoes similar calls from Unions across Europe to protect workers rights in the face of government austerity cuts.