Cuba's social progress showcased at international labour conference

Campaign News | Tuesday, 7 June 2005

Despite US opposition, Cuba is elected to ILO council

Geneva May 7: Cuba has achieved full employment and social security for its entire population - all without disregarding the need for solidarity with its African, Asian, Latin American and Caribbean brothers and sisters, said Cuba's minister of labor Alfredo Morales speaking at the International Labor Organization conference underway in Geneva, Switzerland.

Mr Morales said guaranteeing employment for youths is not only possible in Cuba, but it is also a strategic initiative.

Cuba was elected to the administritive body of the ILO as a full memebrer for the only the second time, despite a US attempt to prevent it.

The island has identified human resources as its principal treasure, after having given careful attention to education and ongoing training, he said.

No child in Cuba is obligated to work to survive and our new social programs are yielding results by improving the population's quality of life, creating jobs for our youths and providing everyone with opportunities to pursue a university education, explained Morales.

The Cuban minister said that over 33,000 Cuban doctors, teachers, sports experts are offering their services in 106 countries around the world; while more than 18,000 youths from Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the United States are enrolled free higher education programs on the


Cuba is elected to council of ILO

Cuba has been elected a full member of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Administration Council, for a three-year mandate up to 2008.

The elections, held every three years, took place within the framework of the 93rd International Labour Conference in Geneva, Switzerland, attended by Cuban Labour Minister Alfredo Morales, who headed the Cuban delegation.

The ILO Administrative Council is comprised of 56 full members (28 governmental representatives, 14 workers organizations representatives and 14 employing institutions representatives) plus 66 associate members.

Ten of the governmental places are permanently occupied by Germany, Brazil, China, France, India, Italy, Japan, Russia, the UK and the US. Thus Monday's elections were to elect representatives from 18 countries.

Cuba has been on the Administrative Council for seven three-year periods, six of them as an associate member, and only once as a full member, during the 1987-1990 period.

Morales evaluated the election of Cuba as a result of the recognition of the Caribbean island"s achievements, such as full employment, youth employment, protections for working mothers, aid and social security, attention to the disabled and other areas that have been promoted in the environment of the battle of ideas that the Government has developed to improve the quality of life of all the population.

He explained Cuba?s election to this body has a special significance, as it occurred despite the US promoting several manoeuvres to torpedo the Cuban candidacy and undertaking numerous activities in different capitals to impede that election.

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