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Friday, July 21, 2017
UNITED NATIONS, Feb 5 2015 (IPS) - Against the backdrop of an estimated 75 million young people unemployed worldwide, this year’s Human Development Report (HDR) will focus on the theme: ‘Rethinking Work for Human Development’.
HDR Director Selim Jahan said work meant more than just employment or jobs, because it also includes, unpaid care work, volunteer work and creative work.
The HDR, to be released in November 2015, will spotlight several aspects of work affecting human development including “youth employment, gender aspects of work, agriculture and rural development, the informal sector, and work during crisis and in post-crisis situations,” Jahan wrote.
Youth unemployment remains a persistent challenge for stable economic and political development around the world.
The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) estimates that 75 million young people are jobless worldwide.
The International Labor Organization (ILO),meanwhile, reported last year that youth unemployment is over three times the unemployment rate for adults across the developing world.
“Regionally, the highest youth unemployment rates are found in the Middle East and North Africa regions, where nearly one in three young people in the labour force are unable to find work.”
“Young women, in particular, are struggling to find work in these regions, with unemployment rates approaching 45 per cent,” the ILO reported.
Another area where human development is closely linked to work is migration. Migrant workers are often negatively affected by poor working conditions, low wages and protracted, sometimes indefinite, periods away from their families.
Migrants from developing countries working in the Middle East are particularly vulnerable to degraded living conditions, occupational health and safety issues and constrained mobility, according to the ILO.
“The kafala system is used in all of the six Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states and keeps the worker’s visa and legal status tied to the employer, which severely constrains workers’ mobility,” the ILO reported.
Qatar has recently attracted considerable international criticism for “serious rights abuses in its construction sector” according to Human Rights Watch.
In a statement released Thursday, HRW said that Qatari authorities still need to implement labor reforms to protect migrant workers from serious human rights abuses.
Human Rights Watch added that any changes to Qatari labour laws also needed to apply to migrant domestic workers, who “are excluded from the general protections of the country’s labor laws”.
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