Integral ecology

"A system change is needed where people are at the center."

The Catholic-inspired entities that promote the Church for Decent Work (ITD) initiative celebrate the Solemnity of St. Joseph the Worker, patron saint of workers, recalling the consequences that the pandemic has had on the most vulnerable workers.

Maria José Atienza-April 28, 2021-Reading time: 2 minutes
decent work first of may

The entities that make up the initiative Church for Decent Work have issued a manifesto on the occasion of the upcoming celebration, on May 1, International Labor Day and the Solemnity of St. Joseph the Worker.

In this manifesto they wanted to emphasize that the "crisis has highlighted the need for a change in the productive system, based on jobs that add value, subject to decent working conditions, and where people are at the center".

Taking as an example the figure of St. Joseph, from whom Jesus himself learned the value of work, ITD stressed "the importance of work as a human activity that enhances the dignity of each person and their families".

Increased job instability due to Covid

The impact of the pandemic is one of the factors that "has accelerated the processes that weaken the right to work, and impoverish, make precarious and discard millions of workers, mainly women and young people".

Among the consequences that Covid has had on family and global economies, these entities point to the destruction of thousands of jobs and the layoffs in which many of the ERTEs have ended, as well as the ineffectiveness of "the social protection measures designed to alleviate the effects of the crisis that have not reached the people who need it most, as has not happened with the temporary subsidy provided for domestic workers or the minimum vital income".

Working points for a system change

For all these reasons, Church for Decent Work has in the need to unite in prayer as a Church and "adopt the necessary measures to make decent work a reality accessible to all people, with conditions that make it possible to maintain a dignified life and social protection that reaches all those who need it" through the following points:

- Redefining the idea of work as a human activity and shaping new policies - care, shorter working hours, etc. - that ensure that every working person has "some way of contributing his or her skills and efforts" to the construction of the common good.

- Promote work with rights, secure, "free, creative, participatory and supportive" (EG 192) in any work relationship and for all people, regardless of age, sex or origin.

 - Guarantee access to social protection measures for those who are unable to work or whose working conditions do not allow them to "make ends meet".

- To achieve social and labor recognition of jobs that are essential for life, with decent working conditions.

- Promote a dialogue with the entire political community, society and institutions to shape a new social contract based on the centrality of the person, decent work and care for the planet.

- Promote the incorporation of youth into the labor market in a society hit by a social and economic health crisis by creating real opportunities for access to decent work.

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