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28 Mär 2023

International Labour Organization

Turkey & Syria: Urgent support needed for thousands of workers impacted by earthquake to prevent poverty, informality & exploitation incl. child labour

"Urgent support needed for hundreds of thousands of workers after Türkiye and Syria earthquakes", 28 March 2023

Hundreds of thousands of workers in Türkiye and Syria have lost their livelihoods because of the earthquakes that hit the south-eastern provinces of Türkiye and northern regions of Syria in February. Without urgent and dedicated support, poverty, informality and child labour are expected to increase, according to new International Labour Organization (ILO) assessments  of the labour market impact of the disaster...

Initial data from Türkiye suggest the earthquake left more than 658,000 workers unable to earn their living. The government says that more than 150,000 workplaces are unusable. The ILO estimates that these affected workers face average income losses of more than US$230 per month each for as long as the disruption continues. Overall, the crisis is likely to have reduced take-home labour income by around US$150 million per month in the affected areas.

The affected provinces in Türkiye are home to more than four million workers, most of whom work in agriculture, manufacturing, trade or other low-value-added services. In Malatya 58.8 per cent of work hours are estimated to have been lost, while in Adıyaman the figure is 48.1 per cent and in Hatay the figure is more than 45.2 per cent...

...the ILO’s assessment on Türkiye warns about increased risks to occupational safety and health, as well as child labour.

In Syria...the assessment finds that around 170,000 workers have lost their jobs as a result of the earthquakes. This has directly affected around 154,000 households and more than 725,000 people. Around 35,000 micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) have also been affected. This temporary ‘disemployment’ has led to total labour income losses equivalent to at least US$5.7 million a month.

The five Syrian districts (or governorates) worst affecte...were home to an estimated 42.4 per cent of the country’s total population. This included around 7.1 million people of working age (16 or older), of whom 2.7 million were in employment (formal and informal). 22.8 per cent of these were women...