Supported by the International Labour Organization (ILO), a consultative workshop in Quetta concluded that the ratification of ILO Safety and Health in mines Convention will ensure the rights of Pakistan’s 300,000 mine workers.
During the consultation organized by the All-Pakistan Labour Foundation (APLF) and Pakistan Central Mines Labour Federation (PCLMF) on Saturday, the representatives of government departments, workers and employers’ organizations, examined ways to promote occupational safety and health in mines.
The participants agreed to intensify the campaign for the ratification of ILO Convention No. 176, to ensure workplace safety and social security coverage for Pakistan’s mine workers. 34 countries have so far ratified Convention 176 which came into force in 1995, but not Pakistan.
“The ratification of Convention 176 is central to achieving decent work in a sector that is particularly prone to accidents and injuries. It is an essential tool for resolving the challenge of occupational safety and health in Pakistan’s mining industry,” said GeirTonstol, Country Director of ILO in Pakistan.
He further recalled that a significant proportion of workers in Pakistan’s mining sector, especially casual labourers were not able to access social protection, as they were not recognized as mine employees. “I am encouraged by the initiative of our social partners to establish a trade union platform of action on OSH in mines here in Baluchistan.