2023 International Workers' Day

Anna Triponel
May 5, 2023
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It was International Workers’ Day on May 1st. 🌎

A day to reflect on work, workers, the value we place on work, and the future of work.

The World Economic Forum recently reported that nearly a quarter of all jobs (23%) globally will change in the next five years, and almost half of an individual’s skills - 44% - will need to change on average across all jobs. Jobs and skills will change, and so too will the role of the employer. In the WEF’s words, a forward-looking employer prioritises “supporting workers’ transitions outside the company when required, prioritising safety and well-being, fostering diversity, equity and inclusion and, finally, placing a premium on taking a skills-first approach over one that prioritises qualifications or job history.” 👥

And for those of you who have been following our updates for a while, you’ll recall that the latest ILO report on wages found that real wage growth had fallen to negative values for the first time in the twenty-first century. The ILO found that the cumulative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and the recent cost-of-living crisis are hitting workers and their families hard, and the impacts are especially severe for lower-income workers. ❗

Also this week, the Canadian Parliament passed the Fighting Against Forced Labour and Child Labour in Supply Chains Act. This is a disclosure piece of legislation, which relates to forced labour and child labour as its name suggests, with a full value chain scope. Companies would be well advised to brush up their knowledge of what human rights due diligence applied to forced labour and child labour looks like - with a particular focus on remedy. (The law specifically looks for information on “measures taken to remediate the loss of income to the most vulnerable families that results from any measure taken to eliminate the use of forced labour or child labour in its activities and supply chains.”) ⚖️

I’m off to Istanbul to moderate a panel at the Cobalt Congress on … can you guess? Environmental and human rights due diligence of course! So looking forward to bringing together all of the insights across the cobalt value chain, as well as from other sectors and industries, thanks to our hybrid format. I look forward to seeing some of you there ✨


PS: Here is our latest foundational video on responsible disengagement - a hot topic for companies and one that will only grow in importance. If you follow our Youtube channel, you’ll also be the first to know when our follow up video is posted - a conversation about the do’s and don’ts of responsible disengagement in practice which should be up on Tuesday.