Director of Research and Policy at the Trades Union Congress (TUC), Dr. Kwabena Nyarko Otoo, is calling on government and stakeholders to resort to social dialogue in addressing the economic impact of the novel Coronavirus on businesses.
Social dialogue is the process whereby social partners negotiate, often in collaboration with the government, to influence the arrangement and development of work-related issues, labour market policies, social protection, taxation or other economic policies.
According to Dr. Nyarko Otoo, government must employ this mechanism to do more and come up with tailor-made solutions to contain the pandemic and create the congenial environment for both employers and employees to thrive during and post COVID-19.
“The stimulus as we have now is a good start. But if you look at all the sectors that have been affected now and workers that are looking up to the government, you clearly see that we need to do more as a country in order to be able to contain the situation that we have at hand. This is only the first generation of the effect that we are seeing. Assuming that all the companies that have asked their workers to work from home become successful in ensuring that they use ICT to do the work, some of those workers will not come back to the workplace. It is a very difficult situation for employers and workers,” he said on Citi TV’s Point of View.
“These are medium to long term effects we need to consider. The scale of the problem is such that, you need to try as much as possible to match the intervention with the expected loss. So, we need to dialogue more -employers, workers, and the government need to use the social dialogue mechanism to actually come to the size and magnitude of the problem we are facing and define the kind of interventions required to address those things.” he added.
The consequences of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic are being felt by many employers and employees.
For many of them, this means having to cope with the likelihood of losing their jobs should the pandemic persist for a long time.
Already, the International Labour Organization (ILO) has predicted that 25 million jobs were threatened by the new coronavirus.
The outbreak of the novel Coronavirus in the country saw a partial restriction on movement for three weeks. Businesses in major economic centres of the country slowed down, causing huge financial implications.
Though the partial lockdown has been lifted, many stakeholders believe it will take some time for business to find their feet again.