In 2019, the International Labour Organization – the oldest UN specialized agency – celebrates its 100th anniversary. To commemorate this milestone, UNPA is issuing three stamp sheets in a se-tenant strip of five format and a souvenir card. Each sheet of 20 stamps will accommodate four se-tenant strips of five stamps.
The International Labour Organization (ILO) is a United Nations agency dealing with the world of work. It sets international labour standards, promotes rights at work and encourages decent employment opportunities, the enhancement of social protection and the strengthening of dialogue on work-related issues.
The ILO was created in 1919, as part of the Treaty of Versailles which ended World War I, to reflect the belief that universal and lasting peace can be accomplished only if it is based on social justice. In 1946, the ILO became a specialized agency of the United Nations. Its unique structure gives an equal voice to workers, employers and governments that provide a platform for promoting decent work for all women and men.
Today, the ILO’s Decent Work agenda helps advance the economic and working conditions that give all workers, employers and governments a stake in lasting peace, prosperity and progress. The importance of decent work in achieving sustainable development is highlighted by Sustainable Development Goals, which aim to “promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all”.
The Artist: Owen Smith (USA)
Owen Smith’s award-winning illustrations have appeared in Rolling Stone, Sports Illustrated, Time, Esquire, and the New York Times. He has created 19 covers for The New Yorker. Currently he is working on an illustrated edition of John Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath. He has designed mosaics, murals, and relief sculptures for public spaces including the 36th Street Subway Station in Brooklyn New York, and Laguna Honda Hospital in San Francisco. Owen regularly shows in galleries in Los Angeles and New York. He lives with his wife and two sons in the San Francisco Bay Area. For the past six years Owen has chaired the Illustration Program at California College of the Arts.
Statement from the artist about his work
I have long been interested in art that focuses on the common aspirations and the struggles of ordinary people. I am influenced by the murals created during the Great Depression that depict the dignity of labour. The International Labour Organization advocates for social justice and work standards worldwide. These stamps celebrate the remarkable history and accomplishments of the ILO.