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Bureau of International Labor Affairs
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Working Conditions

Every worker should enjoy decent and safe working conditions.  This requires, at a minimum, the regulation of working time, the appropriate payment of wages, and effective oversight of occupational safety and health (OSH). In order to qualify for certain trade benefits through the U.S. Generalized System of Preferences program, countries must be taking steps to afford acceptable conditions of work with respect to minimum wages, hours of work, and OSH.  In addition, labor standards in a number of U.S. free trade agreements include commitments related to acceptable conditions of work. Read More

Our Role

  • We monitor the scope and enforcement of labor laws regarding acceptable conditions of work as part of certain trade preference programs and free trade agreements.
  • We work with DOL's Wage and Hour Division, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and the Mining Safety and Health Administration, as well as the International Labor Organization to promote improved working conditions worldwide.

Occupational Safety & Health

  • We exchange good practices on safety and health through bilateral labor dialogues with Brazil, China, India, and Vietnam.
  • We conduct an annual safety and health dialogue with the European Union under the U.S.-EU Labor Dialogue.
  • We fund technical assistance programs to improve occupational health and safety conditions for adult workers, youth, and adolescents allowed to work.