ILO-supported achievements in Jordan

The ILO in Jordan implements a portfolio of projects which work with government, employers, and workers including Jordanians, Syrian refugees, and migrant workers. Gender equality is central to all of ILO’s work both in addressing women’s practical gender needs as well as strategic ones.

Employment Promotion

  • Since 2016, created more than 800,000 workdays for over 17,000 Jordanians and Syrian refugees, and helped get more than 200,000 work permits issued for employment intensive works for public infrastructure and agriculture.
  • Reached an average of 25 per cent participation of women in employment intensive programmes including in unconventional jobs in construction.
  • Established 13 Employment Service Centres which have helped place around 13,000 Jordanians and Syrians in employment, more than one-third of whom are women.

Skills and Enterprise Development

  • Promoted transparency and efficiency through re-engineering the National Technical & Vocational Skills Development Commission (TVSDC) major processes related to licensing, accreditation, testing and certification.
  • Established sector skills councils in priority sectors, garment & leather, and chemicals & cosmetics.
  • Developed an online platform for all sector skills councils in the country to facilitate knowledge-sharing and access to resources.
  • Developed a Competency-Based Training (CBT) Manual for the Arab States.
  • Drafted a National Framework for Quality Apprenticeships (NFQA).
  • Enrolled 10,000 Syrian refugees and Jordanians in a skills recognition programme (45 per cent women).
  • Implemented ILO’s entrepreneurship module, Know about Business to establish start-up businesses and create jobs with targets for businesses owned by women.
  • Established a small and medium enterprises unit devoted to policy advocacy and services with Jordan Chamber of Industry.

Labour Migration

  • Promoted fair recruitment practices through a policy to ensure zero recruitment fees from garment factory workers and a new Regulation No. 63/2020, strengthening the regulation of domestic workers’ private recruitment agencies, both measures benefitting women who make up a large number of both groups of workers.
  • Approved the amendment of Regulation 90/2009 of domestic workers, cooks and gardeners, addressing issues related to withholding wages, abuse, and complaints redress.

Child Labour

  • Implemented the National Framework on Child Labour.
  • Established and upgraded the National Database on Child Labour to include more actors from government and civil society.
  • Developed a web-based mobile application that will allow citizens to report cases of child labour.
  • Drafted Articles 31 to 36 of the Juvenile Justice Law No. 32. which raises the minimum age of criminal responsibility and prioritize a rehabilitative approach to juvenile justice.
  • Supported national efforts to reform the Juvenile law No. 32 in line with international labour standards including developing practical mechanisms in the form of By-Laws pertaining to articles 34-37.
  • Built the capacities of 60 Juvenile police and 180 MOSD behavioural controllers on provision of direct services for the children and their families in accordance with the newly drafted By-Laws.
  • Developed the capacity of 80 labour and health inspectors on identification of OSH hazards incorporating the OSH and CL manual.

Gender Equality

  • Promoted women’s labour force participation through approved gender-responsive labour code amendments on pay equity, childcare, paternity leave, and flexible working hours.
  • Established around 100 new childcare centres to support workers with family responsibilities enter and remain in the workforce.
  • Trained a cadre of women as professional careers in early childhood development with a majority finding jobs in the care sector.
  • Achieved a collective bargaining agreement for private sector teachers, a large majority of whom are women, incorporating non-discrimination measures.
  • Achieved a collective bargaining agreement for garment sector workers incorporating clauses on the elimination of violence, harassment and discrimination as well as on prohibition of pregnancy tests during recruitment.
  • Renewed a collective bargaining agreement covering working conditions and rights at work for 37,000 private sector teachers, a majority of whom are women.
  • Provided technical assistance and guidance for additional maternity protection provisions to the Social Security Law and provisions to use maternity insurance funds to subsidise childcare costs.
  • Worked with the National Committee for Pay Equity and the Stand-up with Teachers Campaign to promote digital payments, to reduce wage violationsof private school teachers, a majority of whom are women.
  • Jordan’s efforts to promote women’s labour force participation and pay equity recognised by it becoming the first Arab State to be invited to be member of the Equal Pay International Coalition (EPIC).
  • Launched EPIC in the Arab region galvanising support and secured 22 pledges from Arab States to promote equal pay for work of equal value.
  • Launched awareness campaigns on issues of pay discrimination and violence and harassment in the world of work.
  • Maintained the operational continuity of nurseries and kindergartens in Jordan during COVID-19.

Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining

  • Established a safe space for migrant workers in the Industrial Zone to facilitate migrant workers access to recreational, educational and grievance redressal services and promote solidarity among migrant workers beyond their national identities and physical work spaces.
  • In 2019, 5,866 workers, about 20 per cent of the total migrant workforce of the QIZ, availed various other such services at the Centre.
  • Achieved a sector-wide collective bargaining agreement for more than 50,000 migrant workers in Jordan’s garment sector that was renewed in 2019.

Social Protection

  • Provided technical support towards the adoption of a new Social Security Law to cover enterprises employing one or more workers, and the self-employed.
  • Supported the ratification of the Convention on Social Security (Minimum Standards), No. 102 (1952), making Jordan the first in the Arab States to do so.
  • Provided evidence based recommendations and technical assistance for the implementation of a national social protection floor to reduce poverty.
  • Supported the revision of the investment strategy of the Social Security Investment Fund.
  • Government, employers’ and workers’ organizations adopted a strategy to institute universal health care.

Tripartism and Social Dialogue

  • Created a unified contract for Jordanian workers and renewed unified contracts for migrant workers and Syrian refugee workers in the garment sector through a two-year collective bargaining agreement.
  • Annulled a draft law that criminalizes strikes.
  • Facilitated the adoption of a 15 per cent increase in the minimum wage raise through negotiations with government, unions and employers.

International Labour Standards

  • Ratified the Maritime Labour Convention.
  • Approved a milestone agreement to allow official inspection of garment factory dormitories.
  • Developed the National Labour Inspection Policy and Strategy.
  • Implemented measures to be removed from the U.S. Department of Labour Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act list.

COVID-19 response

  • Developed an Economic Recovery Framework with the Ministry of Labour in response to the COVID-19 crisis and its impact on employment, covering four critical areas of work: emergency employment measures, skills development, social protection, and managing migration.
  • Established the Emergency Unemployment and Employment Stabilization Fund (EUESF) to provide emergency income support to workers affected by the COVID-19 crisis and pave the way for long term institutional strengthening of social protection mechanisms.
  • Designed a nationally approved set of safe working measures to ensure workers have access to emergency decent work opportunities during the pandemic.
  • Launched social media campaigns to hear the voices of workers struggling under the ongoing COVID-19.
  • Assessed the impact of COVID-19 on the labour market, including Syrian refugees, and small and medium enterprises.
  • In response to COVID-19, facilitated the agreement between employers and the trade union in the garment industry that mandates employers to make travel arrangements and bear the cost of COVID-19 PCR test for travel purposes, allowing migrant workers to travel back to their home countries.
  • Prepared multi-lingual information on the implications of Defence Orders for migrant workers.
  • Coordinated with ILO to get information on the status of migrant workers during lockdown and regular updates on issues faced by them.