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Economy

SP City Hall does little against unemployment and keeps rate high

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Brasil de Fato – Between 2017 and 2020, during the management of the toucans João Doria and Bruno Covas at the São Paulo City Hall, the unemployment rate in the capital of São Paulo has always remained above the national average. In 2020, for example, while unemployment in Brazil was 12.2%, on average, so far, in São Paulo it reached 13.2%.

It was not always so. From 2012, when the historical series of the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) began, to 2016, São Paulo remained below the national average. As of 2017, however, the movement was reversed, and the municipality started to figure above Brazilian unemployment rates (see graph).

Unemployment Rate in the city of São Paulo and in Brazil, 2012-2020, according to IBGE / Arte / BdF

Even when unemployment fluctuates downwards, as it did this year, due to the number of people who gave up looking for a job (which leads to a drop in the rates), rates in São Paulo remain higher than the national average.

According to Jefferson Mariano, socioeconomic analyst at IBGE and professor of economics at Faculdade Cásper Líbero, the drop in job search is a reflection of the population’s fear of contracting covid-19 and the significant amount of jobs closed in the period.

According to Clemente Ganz Lúcio, sociologist, advisor to the Forum of Union Centers and former technical director of the Inter-Union Department of Statistics and Socioeconomic Studies (Dieese), the impact of unemployment in the city of São Paulo is due, on the one hand, to a national policy of job creation in “bankruptcy”, and on the other hand, to the lack of responses from the city hall to articulate the intermediation between employers and unemployed.

Regarding the first aspect, Lúcio points to the Labor Reform, and the subsequent outsourcing of work, still approved by Michel Temer, in 2017. The result was a more flexible work protection and the favoring of companies, with adverse consequences for the working class, such as dismissal without union intermediation.

It is not for nothing that the escalation of unemployment becomes more expressive from 2017, only cooling in 2020, still because of the number of people who gave up looking for a job. In this sense, Lúcio argues that the chosen way out of the economic crisis had “serious consequences in the world of work, especially rising unemployment and the generation of informal occupation”.

But why does São Paulo maintain rates above the Brazilian average since 2017?

(the city) would have to create answers, articulation with the business sector, look for things that are not on the shelf

The sociologist explains that unemployment has significantly affected the service sector, not only in São Paulo but in Brazil as a whole. In the municipality, however, this sector has a large weight in the labor supply. “Therefore, the unemployment rate tends to increase, because it has a strong impact on the employment pool of the São Paulo economy.”

In 2018, for example, the service sector employed 25.9% of the employed population. Although expressive, however, the percentage is one of the lowest in the historical series of the São Paulo Labor Observatory.

What does the city of São Paulo do?

Associated with this scenario, Lúcio affirms that city halls, in general, have little capacity to carry out changes without the support of the federal government, which, as seen, went in the opposite direction: that of deepening informality. Still, “the city probably does not have or has not created the capacity to seek an answer that addresses the problem. I would have to create responses, make intermediation, seek alternatives, articulate with the business sector, seek things that are not on the shelf ”, says Lúcio.

“The political role of the city of São Paulo in posing the problem and
seek a structural solution that is not present ”, he analyzes.

There is no structure capable of intermediating between
those who need jobs and those who are offering jobs
job

According to the sociologist, it is up to the city halls to take actions such as professional training, intermediation between labor and employers, guaranteeing microcredit for small and medium-sized businesses, free transportation for unemployed people and investment in urban services to generate jobs.

They are “policies that often have an assistance dimension, but
important to keep the person occupied, working with income,
doing some service to the community. These are small things that
municipalities can do and which have a relative impact (on
unemployment and income generation) ”, points out Lúcio.

“It is clear, however, that there are shortages and in the case of São Paulo this shortage is present in the intermediation of labor. In other words, there is no structure capable of bridging the gap between those who need jobs and those who are offering jobs ”, says Dieese’s advisor.

An example of good intermediation that the City of São Paulo can do was the queue for the job joint effort, in March 2019, promoted by the General Workers Union (UGT), in São Paulo, in the Anhangabaú Valley, where six thousand vacancies were offered by 28 companies, from different sectors, with an average salary of R $ 1.5 thousand with a formal contract.

At the time, the president of UGT, Ricardo Patah, affirmed that the Labor Reform “did not generate anything of employment, it generated vacancy in the informality”. Compared to 2018, when UGT held two joint efforts, the queue increased by 185%. “In the previous times, there was a queue of six, seven thousand people. Today there are 20 thousand. The face of unemployment and the demotivation of the Brazilian population is demonstrated, ”said Patah at that time.

Lúcio reiterates that the task force was an initiative of the movement itself
union: “The last one I remember of this size was made in the management of
(Fernando) Haddad (PT), when they had this type of activity.
Then it was made over the years, always with the main role of the Union
Comercários, which often had the support of the city hall and the
state government, but always a union initiative ”. In that
sense, Lúcio affirms that the City Hall, by itself, was not “creative the
enough ”to get the job done.

São Paulo from several municipalities

In addition to the consecutive increase in annual unemployment rates in 2017 and
2018, another element of this picture is the unequal job offer,
according to the 2019 and 2020 Inequality Map,
respectively, of Rede Nossa São Paulo. In 2017, while the
offer of formal employment, per ten thousand inhabitants of the population of
(PIA), was 59.24 in Barra Funda, in the expanded center, in Cidade
Tiradentes, on the east side, was 0.24.

In the following year, the biggest difference occurred between Sé district,
center of the municipality, and Iguatemi, on the east side. The first with a fee
offering a formal job of 113.8 per ten thousand inhabitants of the PIA;
while the second, 0.39 in the same ratio.

The average monthly remuneration for employment is also discrepant among
districts. In 2018, a formal worker earned R $ 6,884.36, at Itaim
Bibi, upscale region of São Paulo, in the south zone. In the same period, a
formal worker in the Arthur Alvim neighborhood, on the east side, earned R $
2,016.55.

The same occurs in relation to the average monthly income: while Alto de Pinheiros, in the west zone, also a noble region, had an average of R $ 9,591.93, in Lajeado, in the east zone, the average, in 2018, was R $ 2,628.63. Sought by Brasil de Fato, the City of São Paulo did not respond until the publication of this report.

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Economy

more unemployment and more informality

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São Paulo – Government, businessmen and some parliamentarians were in tune with the defense of the bill that, if approved, would lead to the creation of Law 13,467 in 2017. The so-called labor reform, after all, would lead to the creation of millions of jobs. This would happen to the extent that it would end the rigidity of the legislation, which they treated as being “plastered”, facilitating hiring and giving the much-needed “modernization” to the Brazilian labor market.

Because the law completed three years on November 11 “and nobody celebrated, not even timidly”, recalls analyst Marcos Verlaine, from the Inter-Union Department of Parliamentary Advisory (Diap). “Among the expectations generated by the authors, the government of that time, the businessmen, who sponsored, defended and acted strongly in Congress to approve it, the media and reality, remained the harsh reality”, he says, in an article. He defines the measure passed by Congress as a “capital Trojan horse” to implode labor rights.

Collective bargaining?

The insistent defense of the “negotiated over the legislature”, a recurring expression at the time, was not to privilege negotiation, notes the analyst. “It was to remove rights, since the negotiations – both CCT (ccollective labor agreements) and ACT (collective labor agreements) – they never prevented, on the contrary, that the conventions surpass the CLT, nor that the agreements surpass the conventions. ”

The “millions” of jobs did not come, even before the pandemic. The growth in occupation was basically due to informal work. In 2016, the year before the “reform”, the country had 10.1 million unpaid employees in the private sector and 22.4 million self-employed workers. Last year, they were 11.6 million and 24.2 million, respectively (check table). The data are from the National Household Sample Survey (Pnad) Continua, from IBGE.

Modernization or precariousness?

Employment with a wallet fell. And the Gini index at work, which measures inequality, which until 2015 fell, rose again the following year and has not stopped.

The “reform” introduced hiring modalities, such as intermittent work. They were also presented as items of the necessary “modernization”, but union members and researchers identify them as additional signs of precariousness in the market. Although still small, the participation of the intermittent modality has been growing.

This week, the Federal Supreme Court (STF) began to judge direct actions of unconstitutionality against intermittent work. In his vote, the rapporteur, Minister Edson Fachin, considered the item unconstitutional and causing damage to workers’ health. But his colleagues Kassio Nunes Marques and Alexandre Moraes were in favor of the sport. The trial was interrupted by a request for view from Minister Rosa Weber.

If it is impossible to revoke the law in its entirety, Verlaine suggests specific changes, citing intermittent hiring. “It is necessary to negotiate with all political and social actors in order to bring about changes in this scorched earth scenario” he argues.

read more: ‘Labor Reform’: Stories of a False Promise and Changes in ‘Endless Destruction’

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