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International Labor Scene - Implications for the Decade of the 1980s 'The Way the Wind Is Blowing' (From Arbitration Issues for the 1980s, P 302-310, 1982, James L Stern and Barbara D Dennis, ed. - See NCJ-96502)

NCJ Number
J N Gentry
Date Published
15 pages
This overview of the International Labor Organization (ILO) addresses its history, U.S. participation, its role in Poland's labor problems, and future trends.
The ILO is the only truly tripartite international body, composed of representatives of government, employers, and workers from more than 140 nations. Its primary mission is to establish a body of labor standards that all nations observe. The ILO also has provided significant amounts of technical assistance and vocational training, particularly to developing nations. The United States withdrew from the ILO in 1977 due to disagreements with Eastern Bloc and Third World countries, but rejoined last year. In the future, the ILO should continue to set international labor standards, be able to carry out its mission without political posturing, and provide a forum for introducing fair and humane working conditions for all peoples. Because of the growth of multinational corporations, the ILO should become even more important. Now that U.S. companies have operations in many foreign countries, it will be interesting to see if its stance toward labor standards in the Third World changes. Also, the question of international trade will be more important to American interests. Finally, the ILO can play a major role on the international labor front, as demonstrated by its considerable but little publicized efforts on behalf of Polish workers.