ILAB News Release: [10/07/2009]
Contact Name: Suzy Bohnert or Bennett Gamble
Phone Number: (202) 693-4665 or x4667
Release Number: 09-1186-NAT
Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis addresses the 16th Inter-American Conference of Ministers of Labor in Buenos Aires, Argentina
WASHINGTON U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis leads the U.S. delegation to Buenos Aires, Argentina, for the 16th Inter-American Conference of Ministers of Labor. Today Secretary Solis addresses the labor minister attendees in a plenary session titled "Coordination of Policies and Programs for Promoting Employment: a Guiding Framework in Facing the Crisis."
"Our response to the economic crisis must provide greater economic security and new opportunities for equitable advancement," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Forums such as our Inter-American Conference provide an important opportunity for us both to share our successes and to learn from how each nation meets key challenges."
Solis' speech emphasizes employment as the centerpiece of recovery measures and notes that the Labor Department continues to work with U.S. government agencies, trade unions and the private sector to design and implement strategies and programs that strengthen the middle class and respond to the economic crisis.
During the Conference, Secretary Solis will have the opportunity to talk with colleagues about reducing poverty, creating opportunities for women and vulnerable populations, and improving worker rights and working conditions. Labor ministers from 34 governments were invited to participate in the conference, which is held every two years with the support of the Organization of American States. This year's theme is "Facing the Crisis with Development, Decent Work and Social Protection."
During the visit, Secretary Solis and Argentine Minister of Labor, Employment and Social Security, Carlos Tomada, signed a Letter of Understanding to facilitate technical cooperation between their respective ministries focused on key issues including employment generation, skills development, occupational safety and health, discrimination in the workplace, and social insurance programs.
Others in Solis' delegation include Assistant Secretary of Treasury for Economic Policy Alan Krueger along with officials from the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs and Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, and the U.S. Permanent Mission to the Organization of the American States.