The International Labour Organization (ILO) has advised the government to provide short-term jobs to the North Waziristan IDPs on priority basis to avoid their long-term unemployment.
A large number of IDPs are sitting idle most of the day either on the sidelines of the distribution hubs or in the city areas due to unavailability of any productive engagement for them, said a press release.
ILO’s reconnaissance mission to Bannu on July 22-23 observed the prevalence of child labour in the area which seems inevitable due to economic stress on the families, “but this is not condonable and should be restricted by providing immediate alternate employment opportunities to adult family members.”
Due to lack of credible labour force statistics on FATA, it is also very difficult to assess the actual magnitude of job losses and plan for the workforce accordingly, says the press release.
“In view of this situation, the ILO has designed and funded a gender sensitive intervention to facilitate short-term employment for the internally displaced families and engage them in productive activities. This is with the aim of reducing vulnerabilities, burden on Government resources and improving the dignity of IDPs and their living conditions in the host communities.”
The organisation will set up an emergency employment information centre and start registering IDPs for provision of employment under different work modalities. While some could be engaged in direct employment through cash-for-work, others will be supported through provision of work tools to look for work on their own.
The ILO will also facilitate the displaced people in getting employment with other organisations or with well-off local families eg as domestic helpers or care givers.
The current strategy will lay the foundation for short-term employment and livelihoods by providing immediate impact support to the affected communities to generate jobs and incomes, and by putting in place the building blocks for long-term recovery.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 27th, 2014.