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"Foreign Minister Gbehzongar Findley Highlights Strides to Address Labor Challenges in Liberia at commemoration of 100th anniversary of the International Labor Organization"

(New York, April 10, 2019) Liberia's Minister of Foreign Affairs, His Excellency Gbehzongar Milton Findley says the Government of Liberia through its National Development Framework, the Pro-Poor Agenda for Prosperity and Development (PAPD) is expanding social inclusion in the country through the provision of work and life skills opportunities and Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) interventions.

The efforts, according to Minister Findley are intended to accelerate the process of transforming Liberia’s demographic dividend--its huge youth population, into a potential driver of growth; in response to key challenges of gender imbalance, youth unemployment; low economic growth; and capacity issues in the labor sector.

Addressing a High-level Meeting on the "Future of Work With Decent Work" in commemoration of the One-hundredth (100th) anniversary of the establishment of the International Labor Organization (ILO) at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, Minister Findley said as the world strives to create decent work for all, it was important to pay close attention to the most vulnerable; especially women and youth.

Said Minister Findley: "In our quest to create decent work for all, we must pay close attention to the most vulnerable and those farthest behind, including women and youth. Hence we must provide an enabling environment for the full participation of women in the Labor force and particularly within the formal economy; and harness the potential of the youths to reap the demographic dividend".

The Liberian Foreign Minister then congratulated the International Labor Organization on its 100 years of existence, hailing its devotion and commitment to promoting the rights of workers; the provision of decent employment opportunities; enhancing social protection and strengthening dialogue on work-related issues.
Minister Findley said the Republic of Liberia as a member of the ILO since its creation in 1919, had ratified Twenty-five (25) International Labor Conventions and was proud of the partnership with the organization.

He noted that the partnership with the ILO had created opportunities in many areas for the advancement and promotion of workers’ rights, and decent work for all. "This journey has created the opportunity to partner in many areas for the advancement and promotion of workers’ rights, and decent work for all through a number of initiatives including the “Decent Work Bill”, which was recently passed in Liberia; and support for the establishment of an Employment Services Bureau at the Ministry of Labor. We are pleased that the ILO continues to partner with Government through the provision of technical, financial and advisory services." Minister Findley emphasized.

Minister Findley also used the occasion to express the Government's desire to continue partnering with the other United Nations Agencies and International partners, particularly in reference to the Decent Work Country Programmes (DWCPs), which promote decent work as a significant component of national development strategies.

Minister Findley was accompanied to the High-level Meeting by Hon. Lenn Eugene Nagbe, Minister of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism, and His Excellency Ambassador Dee-Maxwell Saah Kemayah, Sr., Permanent Representative of the Republic of Liberia to the United Nations.

The High-level Meeting on the "Future of Work a With Decent Work" was mandated by a General Assembly Resolution to commemorate the One-hundredth (100th) anniversary of the establishment of the International Labor Organization (ILO). The ILO was founded in 1919 on the realization that clear rules were needed to ensure that economic progress went hand in hand with social justice, prosperity and peace for all.