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Cost Benefit from Compliance with The Labour Laws and Standards

Cost Benefit from Compliance with The Labour Laws and Standards

Uganda is estimated to have 19,976,000 working population in urban and peri-urban settings which includes men and women in the age bracket of 14 to 64 years. Workers are guaranteed rights and freedoms for their protection in employment as provided for in international human rights instruments including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)1 and International Labour Organization declarations which have been ratified under: The Constitution of the Republic of Uganda 1995; The Employment Act 2006; The Labour Unions Act 2006; Occupational safety and Health Act 2006; Workers’ Compensation Act; Labour disputes Act 2006 and; Minimum wages Council 1957.

The predominance of the informal sector has equally affected labour market where 70% operate under this sector with limited regulation. 54% work in harmful environments with high rate of labour disputes that go unnoticed and unattended to. Capacity to resolve labour disputes is challenged by the weak systems and infrastructure under district local government where labour officers are poorly facilitated and yet the industrial court is located in Kampala which makes it expensive for upcountry based workers.

Platform for Labor Action (PLA) a national civil society organization working to promote and protect rights of vulnerable and marginalized workers undertook to study the cost benefit of compliance with labour and employment standards to generate information on costs/or benefits of complying with labour and employment standards in Uganda. The study is an advocacy tool to bring to the attention key players in the employment sector on matters concerning compliance and how this is to the benefit of all. The study covered the four regions of Uganda with data being collected from the main employment centers which were urban and peri-urban settings in these regions.

This was a cross-sectional design that involved data collection from a cross-section of the population that has direct relationship with employers and employees in Uganda. Data collection involved literature review, qualitative data collection (KIIs) as well as quantitative data collection (798 questionnaires) that enabled the participation in substantive numbers. Random sampling was employed and for quantitative interviews, self administered questionnaires were used. Data analysis was done using SPSS and Excel tables were generated and used for development of tables and figures used in this report. Study limitations included reluctance on the part of employers to fill questionnaires and the busy schedule of workers to participate in the study. This called for flexibility in data collection where questionnaires would be left behind and picked at the time of the respondents convenience.

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Platform for Labour Action (PLA) is a National Civil Society Organization that was founded in the year 2000. PLA is focused on promoting and protecting the rights of vulnerable and marginalized workers through empowerment of communities and individuals in Uganda.

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