Summary of side-event:
As countries build back better from the pandemic towards a more resilient and sustainable life free from adverse effects or poverty, inequality, and poor physical and mental health, in this side event, a panel of organizational psychologists and private sector leaders identify the needs, and offer solutions, for workers and companies to thrive. Their expertise addresses “decent work” as described in SDG8 of the UN 2030 Agenda, and its intersection with target 3.4, on mental health and well-being, while promoting efforts for vulnerable and underserved populations, which is the focus of the emerging field of Humanitarian Work Psychology.
This side event highlights expectations of employees returning to work, to be treated equitably, and with respect and dignity, and responsibilities of businesses and their leadership to fulfill these expectations. The relationship between mental health needs of returning employees and the success of organizations is described for employees of the UN and companies worldwide. Innovative solutions include new technologies, and application of the “living wage” which provides for workers while ensuring the viability of businesses, as well as principles of “behavioral science,” a field recently acknowledged by the UN Secretary-General. The side event underscores the importance of SDG8 under review in this session of the HLPF and encourages governments, the private sector, civil society and all stakeholders, in the spirit of SDG17, to focus on decent work for economic recovery and to achieve the SDGs going forward.