The promotion of sound industrial relations is a critical part of effective labour market governance. It requires an effective system for the prevention and resolution of labour disputes. There are times when the relationship between workers and employers and their respective organizations will be harmonious and cooperative; at other times there may be disagreement and conflict. Some conflict is inevitable in any employment relationship and accepted as normal. The inevitability of labour conflicts, however, does not mean that they should be ignored.
Conflict can develop into a dispute with negative consequences for the parties involved and the broader economy and thus needs to be managed. Ideally, conflicts arising within the workplace can be prevented from escalating into formal disputes that then require the intervention of third parties, including State institutions. Strengthening dispute prevention and resolution within workplaces is thus of fundamental importance. However, it is also necessary to consider the various arrangements outside the workplace that can assist employers and workers and their organizations to resolve their disputes through processes such as voluntary conciliation and arbitration, without resorting to the court system.
Providing a voluntary, free-of-charge, and expeditious mechanism for labour disputes settlement as required by ILO standards is therefore crucial. This may be done by an existing labour administration or by an independent commission or board. The economic downturn in some countries has put even more pressure on labour disputes prevention and resolution mechanisms. Very often under-staffed and under-resourced organisations have to deal with an increasing number of cases. An effective labour disputes prevention and resolution system is therefore critical for ensuring productive and stable employment relations.
Ministry of labour officials, government officials, dispute-resolution agency officials, employers' and workers' representatives, industrial relations practitioners, ILO and international organization officials.
The general objective of the workshop is to improve the participants knowledge on effective mechanisms of labour disputes prevention and resolution.
More specifically, at the end of the workshop, the participants will have: