ILO urges better policies to protect workers, businesses, as digital platforms proliferate

In its new publication, the UN International Labour Organization (ILO) underscored the need for improved international policy cooperation to promote decent work opportunities and boost sustainable business growth in the digital economy. The report, titled World Employment and Social Outlook 2021: The role of digital labour platforms in transforming the world of work, identifies the challenges for digital platform workers, including over working conditions, hours and income, and the lack of access to social protection, freedom of association, and collective bargaining rights. The report, which hinges on surveys and interviews with some 12,000 workers and representatives of 85 businesses around the world in multiple sectors, focuses mainly on two types of digital labour platforms: online web-based platforms and location-based platforms. ‘Digital labour platforms are opening up opportunities that did not exist before, particularly for women, young people, persons with disabilities and marginalized groups in all parts of the world. The new challenges they present can be met through global social dialogue so that workers, employers and governments can fully and equally benefit from these advances. All workers, regardless of employment status, need to be able to exercise their fundamental rights at work,” highlighted ILO Director-General Guy Ryder.