9 July 2012
More than 400 representatives from civil society, private sector, trade unions and scientific community met on 16 June 2012 in Rio de Janeiro to engage in Sustainable Development (SD) Dialogues on Unemployment, Decent Work and Migration. The purpose of these Dialogues is to engage civil society in the summit outcome. The interactive and action oriented debate aimed at making concrete recommendations to the Head of State and Government at the Rio+20 conference.
Discussions were initiated over an online platform with a wider public audience in early May. After a fruitful debate, online voting prioritized 10 action-oriented recommendations that were presented to the panelists and audience of the Sustainable Development Dialogues on 16 June 2012.
Among the panelists were Ms. Sharon Burrow, Secretary General from the International Trade Union Confederation, Ms. Nana-Fosu Randall, Founder and President of Voices of African Mothers, Mr. Kersten-Karl Barth, Director of Siemens Global Sustainability, Mr. James K. Galbraith, Professor at the Texas University.
Moderator Jonathan Watts from the Guardian noted that recommendation one “Put education in the core of the Sustainable Development Goals agenda” emerged as the top recommendation from the online votes and will be conveyed directly to the Head of State and Government present at the summit.
Together with the panelists, the audience had the opportunity to select two additional recommendations to be conveyed to the Rio+20 delegations. Engaging discussions and plenary votes resulted in the following two additional recommendations:
1. Commit to a Decent Work for All goal by 2030, including
- the right to bargain collectively
- unemployment reduction,
- elimination of precarious work,
- gender equality at the workplace
- promotion of green and decent jobs, taking into account the special needs of women and youth;
- as well as to a Social Protection for All goal by 2030, guaranteeing social protection, at least at the level of national floors, including minimum wages and guarantees for access to health care, and income support for unemployed, aged, disabled, children and pregnant women.
2. Compel national governments to respect the human rights of all migrant workers and their families including those in Temporary Foreign Worker programs and those climate refugees who will be displaced by environmental impacts.
The Dialogue was the first of a series of 10 organized by the Government of Brazil with the support of the United Nations.
(For further information see also the UNCSD webpage
and the press release from the Earth Negotiations Bulletin