Background

The High-level Committee on Programmes submitted, for the consideration of CEB, a toolkit for mainstreaming employment and decent work objectives in the policies and activities of United Nations organizations.  The toolkit represented an effective response to Member States’ resolve to make the goals of full and productive employment and decent work for all a central objective of national development strategies, including poverty reduction strategies, as part of efforts to achieve the Millennium Development Goals,  it had been a collective process led by ILO under the guidance of the High-level Committee on Programmes and provided a means to facilitate policy coherence around a shared and common objective.    The toolkit had been conceived along the four pillar structure of the decent work agenda: employment creation/enterprise development; social protection; standards and rights at work; and governance/social dialogue.  It contained sets of questions in each of these areas for organizations to use to determine how their strategies, policies and programmes were interlinked with employment and decent work outcomes, whether at the global, regional, country, sector or local levels, and how they may optimize employment outcomes.

 

Discussion

 The Board voiced strong support for the initiative, and expressed appreciation for the inclusive approach taken in developing the toolkit that could be usefully replicated in other areas as an integral part of the effort to advance policy coherence within the system

 

Action

CEB gave its full endorsement to the toolkit for mainstreaming employment and decent work objectives in the policies and activities of United Nations organizations and agreed to proceed along the following steps: 

  • Each CEB member to carry out its own initial self-assessment to establish a baseline to mark progress in 2010 and 2015.  Initial assessments to be reported to HLCP in September 2007, for CEB to provide an input to the Commission on Social Development (reverting to employment and decent work at its Feb 2008 session).
  • Each agency to also start identifying and selecting its own knowledge-based tools, networks and good practices and post them in the interactive platform of the toolkit in order to make them available to all participating agencies. HLCP to monitor process and report on progress.
  • The toolkit to be expanded to focus on the country level, through the adaptation of the toolkit to a set of countries, at different levels of development for which employment and decent work is a critical challenge.
  • A concrete plan of reciprocal capacity-building to be developed, pooling the resources of the ILO Turin Centre and the United Nations System Staff College.