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1 OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY FOR INFORMAL WORKERS Social Protection in Africa: Sharing Experiences on the Informal Economy EC & AU Commission Capacity.

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Presentation on theme: "1 OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY FOR INFORMAL WORKERS Social Protection in Africa: Sharing Experiences on the Informal Economy EC & AU Commission Capacity."— Presentation transcript:

1 1 OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH AND SAFETY FOR INFORMAL WORKERS Social Protection in Africa: Sharing Experiences on the Informal Economy EC & AU Commission Capacity Building Workshop March 2011, Nairobi, Kenya. Masuma Mamdani, Senior Researcher, Ifakara Health Institute, Tanzania. Francie Lund, WIEGO (SP-OHS Programme Director) and Senior Research Associate, Univ. of KwaZulu, Durban, SA.

2 WIEGO A global research and advocacy network, working in some 40 countries, promoting and advancing the interests of poorer informal workers, especially women Informal work is normal and not residual Does NOT represent member-based organisations (MBOs), works with, builds & strengthens networks of informal worker organisations (MBOs). Gives MBOs and informal workers visibility, voice, and validity (recognition) 2

3 WIEGO PROGRAMME AREAS Social Protection, Urban Policies, Global Trade - 3 content programmes Statistics Prog: fundamental to greater visibility and recognition, changed the way labour force data is collected in many countries, inc. 14 Afr countries Organization & Representation: Advocacy wing in direct contact with worker org, Sharing & Learning (workshops, policy dialogue, regional meetings, papers, articles, development and dissemination of accessible materials)

4 EXPANDED DEFINITION OF THE INFORMAL ECONOMY (IE) IE - the diversified set of economic activities, enterprises, and workers that are not regulated or protected by the state. IE (or informal employment) includes : –Self-employment in informal enterprises: employers own account operators unpaid contributing family workers –Wage employment in informal jobs: non-standard employees of informal enterprises non-standard employees of formal enterprises casual or day labourers industrial outworkers (also called homeworkers) IE inside and outside informal enterprises (whether carried out for formal sector enterprises or households) WIEGO promoted this expanded definition in collaboration with the ILO and the International Expert Group on Informal Sector Statistics (the Delhi Group): it was endorsed by the International Conference of Labour Statisticians (ICLS) in 2003

5 SEGMENTED LABOR MARKETS/ EMPLOYMENT STRUCTURES What do we mean by segmentation? Constraints exist which prevent individuals from moving into better employment opportunities (or improving the quality of existing employment) What causes segmentation? Discrimination, social norms, unequal wealth/assets, unpaid care responsibilities, lack of credit, lack of public goods/services, etc Why does segmentation matter? Reinforces existing patterns of poverty and social exclusion. Issue of equity: gender, racial, caste segmentation. Issue of basic rights and the choices available to individuals. In summary: a social justice issue


7 WORKING POOR IN THE INFORMAL ECONOMY In Unregulated Factories: garment makers shoe makers In Small Workshops: scrap metal recyclers shoe makers weavers garment makers and embroiderers paper-bag makers On Streets or In Open Spaces: street vendors push-cart vendors garbage collectors roadside barbers construction workers In Fields, Pastures, and Forests: small farmers agricultural labourers shepherds forest gatherers At Home: garment workers embroiderers shoemakers artisans or craft producers assemblers of electronic parts

8 EMPLOYMENT, INFORMALITY, POVERTY Employment - the most important way in which the benefits of growth can be shared. Most of the worlds poor – especially in developing countries – are working. Informal rather than formal employment is on the rise. The vast majority of the working poor – those who earn less than US$ 1 per day - earn their living in the informal economy where: –average earnings are low –risks are high Poverty reduction is not possible without a)Increasing formal employment opportunities AND b)Increasing the assets and earnings AND reducing the risks of those who work in the informal economy.

9 POLICY AND INSTITUTIONAL REFORM: THROUGH DIALOGUE AND NEGOTIATION Tripartite dialogues and negotiations Multi-partite initiatives (involving multiple relevant stakeholders –e.g. Fair Trade and Ethical Trade, the Global Compact) Multi-partite reform processes Process should involve all relevant key stakeholders - government (national & local), private sector, civil society (trade unions + MBOs of working poor + NGOs working on labor and employment issues, employer associations)

10 Social Protection: The Context Vast majority of poor who work informally: – precarious & high risk exposure –have no social security coverage to protect against short term risks or life-time contingencies –cannot afford private insurance, have little access to social insurance Poorer people live and work in poor communities, where it is hard to insure against risk In developing countries: –state systems of social insurance do not target informal workers, wage employed or self-employed –state systems of social assistance for poorer and vulnerable people do not target able bodied people of working age

11 DIFFERENT STRATEGIES FOR DIFFERENT SECTORS Domestic workers: more potential for integrating into existing labour policy and legislation in line with extend social protection campaign Street and market vendors : Focus on local government (not national government) policies Encourage infrastructural service delivery to reduce risk AND increase productivity AND protect both informal workers and the public

12 DIFFERENT STRATEGIES FOR DIFFERENT SECTORS Industrial outworkers : Encourage infrastructural delivery to private homes Extend employer/ owner-of- capital insurance to include private homes Integrate social protection for informal workers into trade agreements/ codes of conduct Waste-pickers: negotiate with municipalities/private sector for provision of safety equipment and reduction of hazards at the place of work provide access for workers to local government/private sector social provision – health services and health insurance, training courses, educational bursaries

13 OHS FOR INFORMAL WORKERS How to re-think OHS as a more inclusive discipline, for different types of informal workers? What institutional reform would be necessary – at national and local government level - to reach more workers? How can informal workers be integrated in inclusive and sustainable platforms for negotiation and policy development?

14 OHS PROGRAMME DESIGN Countries Africa :Ghana, Tanzania Asia:Ahmedabad and Pune Latin America:Brazil, Peru Occupational groups, including street vendors indigenous caterers homebased workers informal recycling workers domestic workers agricultural workers seaweed farmers

15 RESEARCH Understanding the Context The informal economy in the country Institutional mapping and analysis of OHS Participatory research on risks and hazards with MBOs Focus groups discussions, mobility mapping, time and motion studies, household/ enterprise interviews, photography, health checklists 15

16 TANZANIA MAINLAND: DATA ON OCCUPATIONAL INJURIES Available data - hugely underestimated Reporting is limited to the workers covered by the system - those largely working in the formal sector (around a tenth of workplaces are registered) Environmental hazards are widespread - especially in the informal sector and in SMEs where the majority of the work force is employed. Workers - often unaware about OHS issues and remain vulnerable to occupational injuries

17 TANZANIA: OPPORTUNITIES FOR IMPROVED STATISTICS ON OCCUPATIONAL INJURY AND DISEASE FOR INFORMAL WORKERS Strengthening routine collection at district/council level? Targeted (and nested) questions in periodic surveys (HBS, LFS, DHS, census) at national level? Coordination of ongoing data collection activities? Strengthening the role of Municipalities or Councils at the Local Government (LG) level in the management and implementation of OHS Improved statistics => improved understanding of OHS complexity => informed policies

18 TANZANIA SOCIAL PROTECTION FRAMEWORK Many protective laws, policies, programmes & projects, Involving multiple state and non-state actors Scattered, ill-coordinated and the general impact of these has been limited. It is therefore not just about building new systems and new programmes. It is also about assessing the effectiveness or rather weaknesses of existing systems and programmes.

19 GHANA: POOR OPERATORS LACK INCENTIVE TO MAINTAIN CLEAN WORKING ENVIRONMENTS Indigenous Caterers Association, Accra: survey of 20 chop bars (informal eating establishments) Bar operators on average spent around US$ 1,142 annually on water, refuse removal, use of toilets, cleaning equipment, employee health certificates & fire fighting equipment How to make OHS more affordable for informal businesses?

20 GHANA & TANZANIA: INSTITUTIONAL PROBLEMS OF LOCAL GOVERNMENT Lack of horizontal coordination between local government departments that have jurisdiction over various aspects of health and safety Not enough fit between between LG and national govt Lack of institutionalised communication between LG and informal workers Poor dissemination of public information (laws, policies, regulations, by-laws…) Insufficient regulation of privatised services

21 INTERVENTIONS: PREVENTION OF RISKS, IMPROVING WORK CONDITIONS Participatory health screenings on morbidity and risk Development of prototypes of improved equipment Assessment of impact of new/ modified equipment Exchanging good practices between countries; and between national, regional and international organisations & networks of informal workers

22 Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing (with OHS microsite) 22

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