The Role of Employers in Peace Building
“Even though geography might divide us, our collective vision of peace building is what unites us”
During the Geneva Peace Week 2021(GPW21) held from the 1st -5th of November the role of Social Partners in Peace Building was emphasized.
In the panel discussions key representatives across the globe presented the views of social partners and non-traditional actors i.e., workers and employer organizations in sustaining peace and raising awareness of peace builders on the advantages of consulting and engaging social partner organizations.
Mrs. Jacqueline Mugo, speaking as Vice President for Africa, International Organization of Employers (IOE), noted that in as much as there are some frameworks for peacebuilding at a global and continental level reality was that conflict is still a part of our day to day lives. She therefore called for dialogue with all parties in all efforts towards peacebuilding be it at the political or social level.
Mrs. Mugo also noted that employer organizations have extensive experience in social dialogue and are change catalysts for societal good by the very nature of their work therefore they have an important role in ensuring a country’s leadership remains stable. In presenting examples, she cited the case of Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE) that prepared a manifesto to engage the social class and ensure that they embrace the spirit of dialogue, discuss issues, and present them to the electorate. This model was successful in creating an environment for holding discussions during the campaigning period to avert conflict in the 2013 General Elections.
Some of the recommendations emanating from the discussions include:
- Harnessing the digital sphere for peace, i.e., using technology to champion for peace and reach out to as many people as possible. Equally bringing everyone on board and learn how these solutions can be used to create and maintain peace.
- Actualize the different discussed approaches by seeing which can be tailored to one’s specific situation, an example was finding ways of collaborating with the human rights societies who have already mastered the art of advocating for social justice and peace building.
- Using the peace tools that are readily available in promoting and building peace i.e., the Sustainable Development Goals which are wholistic and act as a call to action to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure that by 2030 all people enjoy peace and prosperity
- Apply the peace talk into our lives. Walk the talk. Are you racist? Tribalistic? Do you advocate for classism? Nepotism?
- Create more spaces for such dialogues and carry everyone on board the peace agenda bandwagon.