Workers’ rights prioritized

(VOVWORLD) - Workers' Month 2024 will conclude on May 31. This annual campaign aims to assist governments, employers, and society in promoting the care and protection of the legal and legitimate rights and interests of state employees and workers. In Vietnam, ensuring these rights is a top priority of all development policies.

Vietnam now has over 52 million workers. Vietnam emphasizes the importance of workers' rights as a fundamental aspect of its human rights system. The Party and State consistently focus on and implement these rights through significant guidelines and policies.

Workers’ rights acknowledged in major policies

Human rights issues have been acknowledged in Vietnam’s Constitutions since 1946. People, including the working class and employees, are recognized as the center, subject, goal, and driving force of development.

The resolution of the 13th National Party Congress in 2021 clearly defined the policy of caring for all people by ensuring labor, employment, and income policies, and by effectively implementing social welfare and security measures. The aim is to continuously improve the material and spiritual life of the people. The Prime Minster’s Directive 16 dated 2021 outlined comprehensive measures for sustainable employment, higher living standards, and better working conditions for workers, urging administrations at all levels, sectors, and localities to focus on these goals.

Since 2016, the Prime Minister has engaged in seven direct dialogues with workers and state employees across provinces, regions, and industries, an initiative led by the Vietnam General Confederation of Labor. These dialogues have addressed numerous concerns, wishes, and proposals related to workers' lives and jobs, demonstrating the government's commitment to understanding and acting upon these issues.

Over the past decade, labor policies and laws in Vietnam have been continuously amended and supplemented to align with the Party's policies and guidelines, as well as with International Labor Organization (ILO) standards, reflecting the nation’s socio-economic development. Vietnam has also committed to and implemented international conventions on labor relations, ensuring basic labor standards for workers in accordance with international human rights standards.

Notably, since the Director General of the ILO launched the Global Decent Work Agenda, Vietnam and the ILO have collaborated on three cycles of cooperation for the periods 2006-2010, 2012-2016, and 2017-2021. On the 4th cooperation cycle, from 2022 to 2026,

Luu Quang Tuan, Director of the Department of International Cooperation of the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs, said: "In this 4th cycle of cooperation, we continue to focus on employment, human resource development, and social security, ensuring harmony between the rights of workers and the rights of businesses within the framework of international economic integration. This approach aligns with both the national sustainable development strategy and the United Nations' Sustainable Development Agenda. The Vietnam and ILO Joint Program on Decent Work for the 2022-2026 period promotes the goal of decent and sustainable work in Vietnam."

Undeniable results

The effectiveness of policies ensuring workers' rights has yielded positive outcomes. According to the General Statistics Office, Vietnam's labor structure has shown a positive shift in the first months of this year. In the first quarter of 2024 the labor force reached 52.4 million people aged 15 or older, up nearly 176,000 from the same period last year. The labor force has returned to its pre-COVID-19 development trend.

The average monthly income of workers continues to improve. In the first quarter of this year, it was 300 USD, up more than 10 USD from the previous quarter and 20 USD from the same period last year.

Workers’ average monthly income has improved in most economic sectors. The unemployment rate among the working-age population in urban areas has remained below 3% since the first quarter of 2022.

To address workers’ housing needs, in its Resolution to implement the socio-economic development plan and state budget for 2024, the government urges rapid, effective deployment of social houses for workers and the construction of at least 1 million social housing apartments for low-income people and industrial park workers in the 2021-2030 period, with the immediate goal of building 130,000 apartments this year.