Portrait of a woman dressed as a chef.

Learning how to cook is about changing your life. This is just what Paola Carosella hopes to achieve with “Kitchen & Voice”. The joint initiative of the Brazilian Public Ministry of Labour and the ILO helps give the most marginalized people – the homeless, abused women, Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender and Intersex (LGBTI) people – the chance to have a real job. Paola Carosella is a world-renowned Argentine chef who lives in Sao Paulo. She has been working with the ILO since 2017 on “Kitchen and Voice”, a project that promotes labour market access for vulnerable groups in Brazil.

man working at computer and woman at sewing machine

Those working from home, whose number has greatly increased due to the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, need better protection, says the International Labour Organization (ILO) in a new report. Since homeworking occurs in the private sphere it is often “invisible.” In low- and middle-income countries for instance, almost all home-based workers (90 per cent) work informally. 
They are usually worse off than those who work outside the home, even in higher-skilled professions. In the first months of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 an estimated one-in-five workers found themselves working from home. 

The new ILO Global Wage Report 2020-2021 examines the evolution of real wages around the world, giving a unique picture of wage trends globally and by region.

A boy sitting dow.

ILO welcomes 2021 with a new multimedia platform that focuses on first person stories taking readers on a journey into the world of work and reflecting its human-centred approach.

woman selling produce

A new report by ILO has found that monthly wages fell or grew more slowly in the first six months of 2020 in two-thirds of countries and they are expected to fall further.


The Governing Body of the International Labour Organization has taken the exceptional action of adopting a Resolution to address the dire situation of seafarers trapped at sea because of the COVID-19 pandemic. “The problems faced by seafarers resulting from efforts to contain the virus have lasted unacceptably long”, said ILO Director-General, Guy Ryder. “These key workers continue to transport the food, medicines and goods that we need, but their extended periods at sea, and the inability of seafarers ashore to relieve them, are simply unsustainable.

COVID-19 outbreak has provocated stigma and discrimination against people perceived to have been in contact with the virus or people with certain ethnic backgrounds, nationalities and migrants. How trade unions can address stigma and discrimination at the workplace?

A woman wearing a facemask sits behind a sewing machine.

Fundamental rights at work can play a vital role in building effective, consensus-based responses towards the recovery from the COVID-19 crisis and build back a better, more just world of work, according to the ILO Issue paper on COVID-19 and fundamental principles and rights at work. However, the paper also warns that the crisis has placed these freedoms and rights at work at risk, as countries face increases in poverty, inequality and vulnerability.

young woman working on laptop

Sitting at her laptop in Jakarta, Indonesia, Laura Lesmana Wijaya is busy building her first online shop. The portal will be used to promote and sell household products made by local blind and deaf people. The 29-year-old, who is herself deaf, was one of 19 people with disabilities selected to take part in ILO training programmes on creating online shop applications and online shop administration. The aim was to improve incomes and create more sustainable livelihoods in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

agricultural workers

Rapid assessments examining the immediate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on vulnerable workers and enterprises in fragile Arab states, show a significant reduction in jobs and incomes for both Syrian refugees and host communities. Limited financial capacities to cope with the crisis have led to a deterioration in living and working conditions of all workers, the assessments found. The studies, conducted by the ILO in collaboration with a range of development and humanitarian partners, show that Syrian refugees, informally employed workers, women and younger workers have been disproportionately affected by the crisis in Jordan, Lebanon and Iraq.

Countries that are already experiencing fragility, conflict, climate change and forced displacement will continue to face multiple burdens as results of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A man stands in front of a group with charts and graphs.

Labour migration from Pakistan has steadily increased in recent decades and continues to improve family and community livelihoods. However, a lack of good information about safe migration, fair recruitment channels and related services is a key challenge for those interested in becoming migrant workers. ILO warns that without accurate information they can be vulnerable to deception and even abuse. Volunteers aim to ensure fair recruitment and safe migration for migrant workers from Pakistan.

View from above of a crowd with graduation caps.

Tertiary education is still a privilege available only to a minority. Higher education allows workers to increase their skills, in the hope of getting better jobs in the future. But are highly educated workers better off in the labour market? In pursuing advanced education, workers may expect to be better prepared for the labour market and find a quality job without much delay. ILO reports this is not always the case: highly educated workers can find themselves unemployed, even for a long time.

workers clearing debris

More than 100 short-term decent jobs clearing debris and rubble from the streets of Beirut have been created for Lebanese nationals and Syrian refugees, under an ILO programme.

Girl working at a desk in front of a computer.

According to the ILO report, Youth and COVID-19: impacts on jobs, education, rights and mental well-being, 70 per cent of youth who study or combine study with work have been adversely affected by the closing of schools, universities and training centres. Despite the extreme circumstances young people are using their energy to mobilize and speak out in the fight against the crisis. According to the survey one in four have done some volunteer work during the pandemic.