ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s first online portal and database about labour inspection was launched on Friday with participation from labour departments of all the four provinces.
The online portal has been developed by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), under its project on ‘Promoting Gender Equality for Decent Employment’ funded by the Canadian government.
The Gender Sensitive Labour Inspection System portal is part of ILO’s work with the provincial departments of labour aimed at assisting inspectors in their routine inspections by providing measurable indicators for gauging progress against gender-inclusive targets.
The facility has been developed by the International Labour Organisation
The online portal brings together information about registered labourers, factories, inspection staff and the inspections conducted. The data will help track trends and measure performance and progress.
All the information is sex-disaggregated and the reports will analyse differences such as wage discrimination between women and men or the incidence of child labour.
The ILO office in Islamabad hosted the national launch of the labour inspection database. Canadian High Commissioner Heather Cruden and officials of the provincial labour departments were present on the occasion.
ILO Country Director Francesco d’Ovidio praised efforts aimed at reforming the labour administration in Pakistan and thanked the Canadian government for its support for the economic and social development of the country.
The gender focal-persons of the provincial labour departments presented overview of the process and explained the main features of the online database.
The Additional Director of Sindh’s Labour Department, Gulfam Memon, while explaining the feedback from inspectors on using the new checklist, said the labour inspectors found it to be easy to use.
He said it brought together information from the entire labour code, including more than 70 labour laws, which could be easily accessed from the database.
The Director of Punjab’s Labour Department, Tahir Manzur, highlighted main features of the web portal, including the capacity to generate reports on different themes, such as wages, occupational safety and health, or by factory, or by province.
“The reports which can be generated from the database are extremely important for the ILO and the government, as they are evidence of compliance with labour laws and international labour standards promoting decent work,” he said.
The Chairperson of Women’s Committee of Pakistan Workers’ Federation, Zahida Parveen, welcomed the launch of the portal and said the initiative would not only help address the issue of gender inequality in the labour force, but also help make the management answerable to higher authorities.
The head of the Women’s Committee at the Employers’ Federation of Pakistan, Shahida Saleem, said the introduction of gender-responsive labour inspection checklist and website would help promote transparency in government’s working and would also help employers understand their obligations under the laws.
Published in Dawn, September 5th, 2015