Challenges for Employment in Developing Countries


Living in a capitalist and globalized world means that while some countries continue to progress and achieve a better society, people living in developing countries are finding it more difficult to sustain their standard of living. Mass unemployment, poor working conditions, workplace discrimination, and wage gaps make it extremely difficult for the majority of people and families living in developing countries.

Several challengesdeveloping countries face in terms of employment opportunities and workplace engagement. In this article, we will be discussing the leading challenges that must be met to achieve better employment for everyone.

Poor and Unregulated Working Conditions

According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), “poor working conditions are the main global employment challenge.”About 61% of workers worldwide, approximately 2 billion people, currently hold an informal job that does not follow government-mandated employment regulations. Since the terms between the employee and employer are not dictated by labor laws, this gives rise to several issues, for example, lack of social protection, overtime and unfavorable working hours, lack of health and safety protocols, dangerous working conditions, and the ability to be fired without any notice. The vast majority of employment opportunities for the masses in developing countries are in the informal sector – the top priority for governments of developing countries should be on the focus of Sustainable Development Goals that provides an opportunity for people to escape the cycle of poverty.

Wage Gaps and Gender Discrimination in the Workplace

One of the greatest social injustices present in the workplace is the wage gap between men and women. It has been proven that women employees who have the same set of skills, responsibilities, and job titles earn 20% less than their male counterparts. Combined with the fact that women are more likely to be hired as involuntary part-time workers, the overall participation of women is far less than the labor force participation among men. This is a much bigger problem for the female labor force in developing countries, especially those with patriarchal societies. Women are, at times, forced to stay home to look after household responsibilities while the men earn. Not only does this exclude a major chunk of individuals from being out of work, but it also has serious implications on the economic growth of the country as well. Through female empowerment efforts and regulations, we must aim to increase literacy and encourage young girls and women to actively be a part of the workforce.

The Persistence of Child Labor

There are millions of children who are still forced to work for a living, with the majority of them from developing countries, being assigned dangerous tasks with little to no safety standards. Child labor stems from the poor living standards of families living in poverty, lack of decent jobs for adolescents, and discrimination against lower-caste individuals. According to UNICEF, improving laws and implementing strict regulations against child labor is what’s needed – monitoring the manufacturing systems of companies, holding sub-contracting firms accountable, and setting up schools for underprivileged children.

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