On 29 March 2023, the Secretary General of ICMC, Msgr. Robert J. Vitillo, gave the opening address at the High-Level Roundtable on the Long-Term Care Sector, a one-day hybrid event hosted by UNI Global Union-Europa, based in Brussels. UNI Europa is the European trade union representing 7 million service workers and their national unions in 50 countries.
Msgr. Vitillo spoke of the Catholic Church’s long history of striving to “recognize, respect, and promote the role of work and workers in the world.” He noted that many of the Popes of the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries have raised their voices to condemn abuses of work, to recognize the rights of workers to self-organize and to engage in collective bargaining, and to affirm the centrality of work for integral human development.
Msgr. Vitillo also spoke at length about the Future of Work – Labour after Laudato Si’ project, which addresses many of the challenges faced by workers in the current global context, including labor migration, COVID-19 and its impacts on the most vulnerable, and the upsurge in the use of robotics and artificial intelligence. Over the course of the project, a recurring theme emerged: Care is Work, Work is Care, and Msgr. Vitillo spoke about what it means.