Despite unprecedented economic growth over the last decades, wages have stagnated globally and have not kept pace with rising productivity. Millions of workers across the world are not earning enough to live in dignity. Eighty-three per cent of people in thirteen of the G20 countries believe that the minimum wage is not enough to live on, according to the ITUC Global Poll.

The share of labour income in GDP is declining, and profits are not being shared with workers through pay rises. Wage inequality is also increasing, with the highest-wage earners enjoying wage rises multiple times larger than the average.

Unions are campaigning together in Africa, Asia, Europe and Central America to demand fair and decent wages through the following regional campaigns:

Unions are calling on their governments to set minimum living wages, based on evidence of the cost of living and with the full involvement of social partners. Obstacles to freedom of association must also be effectively addressed. Collective bargaining on wages should be promoted, and agreements should have wide coverage and be enforced by law.

Adequate, comprehensive social protection systems – in line with ILO Convention 102 and Recommendation 202 – must also be put in place in order to guarantee income security for workers and their families as part of a comprehensive strategy of reducing inequality and promoting adequate living standards for all.