HLPF 2023: Workers and Trade Union Major Group calls for embracing a New Social Contract as a major shift for progress towards the 2030 Agenda and beyond

ITUC participated as key-note speaker at the HLPF official session led by the UN Major Groups and Other Stakeholders Coordination Mechanism, which is the main global platform of non-state actors monitoring the 2030 Agenda, and called to join forces to support a New Social Contract.

The MGoS Coordination Mechanism organised this session on 14 July from 9:00 to 11:00 am New York time in the frame of the High-Level Political Forum 2023 (HLPF). The meeting enabled representatives of the UN Major Groups, including the Workers and Trade Unions Major Group (WTUMG), and other stakeholders, to reflect on their opinions and proposals about how to orient and accelerate the implementation of the Agenda 2030 and the SDGs at its mid-point.

Speaking on behalf of the MGOS Coordination Mechanism, the ITUC Equality Director and delegate at the HLPF, Paola Simonetti, outlined the main impacts of the intertwined global crises on workers in terms of number of lost jobs (almost half a billion people), informality (two billion people), and lack of social protection (most of the world’s population). Simonetti drew attention to the particularly vulnerable situation of women, who are earning less (20%) and are less present in the labour market (27%) than their male counterparts.

Considering this situation, the MGOS Coordination Mechanism advocates for priority shifts in the areas of policy, finance, and governance.

From a policy perspective, Simonetti explained that the labour movement aspires to a new social contract, based on the creation of decent and climate-friendly jobs, accompanied by just transition measures, rights of all workers, minimum living wages and equal pay for work of equal value, universal social protection, ending all forms of discrimination and ensuring a truly inclusive multilateral system that will redress the current imbalance of power and wealth between and within countries.

In terms of a financial shift, Simonetti underlined the importance of strengthening development cooperation and promoting fair debt, taxation mechanisms, and trade rules that are aligned with the SDGs.

On Governance, Simonetti emphasised the support of the global labour movement and organized civil society for stepping up global efforts to deliver the 2030 Agenda, in the framework of UN-centred multilateral frameworks with stronger accountability mechanisms.

“In all these processes, the Major Groups and Other Stakeholders will keep engaging in SDGs monitoring and implementation at national, regional and global level, to build up a truly inclusive multilateral system where social partners and organised civil society are on board and have a say in paving the way to global resilience,” said Simonetti.