With job losses and the financial crisis in rich countries dominating the media, this Opinion asks why employment issues are not high on the agenda when it comes to development policy debate. It suggests that there are key reasons for this: ideological, political, and analytical. The Opinion also gives three reasons why employment and labour markets should be more prominent on the agenda. First, labour is the main source of income and wellbeing for the world's poor. Second, because jobs protect people from sudden shocks, such as rising prices. And third, because employment is the main channels connecting economic growth and poverty reduction. The Opinion maintains that this is the time to prioritise employment and labour market issues in international development policy, citing the work of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the World Bank's MILES approach in this area as good examples.