Executive Secretariat for Integral Development (SEDI)

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L General Assembly of the OAS

Dialogue of the Heads of Delegation, the Secretary General, the Assistant Secretary General with the Representatives of the Civil Societ, Workers the Private Sector and other Social Actors in the framework of the 50th General Assembly of the OAS

Virtual Dialogue - October 19, 2020.  


In the framework of the first-ever OAS General Assembly that is held virtually, representatives of workers, the private sector and civil society, engaged again in a Dialogue with the Heads of Delegation, the Secretary General and the Assistant Secretary General of the OAS.

At the dialogue, the spokespersons referred to the theme of the L General Assembly of the OAS: "Facing the challenges of COVID-19 in the Hemisphere: A Collaborative Approach to Address Vulnerabilities and Build Resilience in Times of Crisis, Based on the Four Pillars of the OAS". The President of COSATE, Marta Pujadas, and her Vice President, Jose Olvera, were the spokespersons for the workers; while the President of CEATAL, Daniel Funes de Rioja, and María Isabel Leon, member of CEATAL, represented the employers.
During their interventions, the COSATE authorities stressed that the solution to the health, economic and social crisis generated by Covid-19 cannot be at the cost of losing labor rights. They called on governments to seek effective and immediate solutions to the current crisis, and to recognize the essential role of workers' and employers' organizations in responding to it, in accordance with the Fundamental Conventions of the ILO, as well as in the context of OAS, within the work undertaken by the Executive Secretariat for Integral Development (SEDI). They stressed that institutionalized social dialogue is essential to achieve a new social contract that puts an end to the deep inequalities in the region and outlines a strategy towards a more just society. They also emphasized that "in the face of the worst crisis of the century, it is essential to institutionalize cooperation, solidarity and regional integration and to resume sustainable development with a democratic agenda of social transformation. An agenda capable of guaranteeing the right to human security, democracy and sovereignty of the peoples".

The President and the vocal of CEATAL, representing the private sector of the Americas, highlighted the challenges that the crisis has brought to the economy, companies, and society in general. They stressed the need for new responses to the reality imposed by Covid-19, which include measures to guarantee the continuity of companies in the short term; and, in the medium and long term, measures to create and promote enabling environments for business development, improve productivity and lay the new foundations for inclusive and sustainable growth. They called on governments to accelerate the necessary transformations to overcome the gaps in productivity, digitization, innovation, research, science and technology, vocational training and production chains, as well as social and employment gaps. They stressed that in a context of a world with trade tensions, multilateralism must be defended and considered that: "for this reason the OAS is fundamental, as a space for dialogue between the States at the regional level and with the Social Actors - in this same space in which we are received today - to formulate a response consistent with said need".