IOSH backs manifesto to end workplace deaths


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The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) today calls for a joint effort to create a safer a healthier world of work as a new manifesto is launched which aims to end workplace fatalities by 2030.

IOSH is one of many organisations to sign the manifesto ‘Zero Death at Work’, which is launched today by the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC).

In unveiling the manifesto, ETUC estimates that more than 27,000 people may lose their lives at work in the EU over the current decade unless action is taken to make workplaces safer, something IOSH says is unacceptable.

Vanessa Harwood-Whitcher, Chief Executive of IOSH, said: “IOSH supports the European Trade Union Confederation call for zero death at work. We promote safe work and workplaces in which no lives are lost and we believe firmly that all deaths can and should be prevented. We encourage an holistic approach to preventing deaths due to occupational injuries through multi-faceted governmental and corporate prevention strategies. This requires strong leadership, worker-involvement and occupational safety and health (OSH) capacity-building, underpinned by effective OSH regulatory regimes.”

Today’s launch coincides with International Workers’ Memorial Day, an annual day in which people who have lost their lives through work are remembered. It is also World Day for Safety and Health at Work.

Vanessa added: “On this day, every year, we commemorate all those lives lost due to accidents and ill-health caused by poor working conditions and inadequate protections. We also consider what improvements everyone can make to protect workers’ rights to go home healthy each day.

“Global figures from the International Labour Organisation show that many people are still dying as a result of occupational accidents or work-related diseases, and new challenges such as the Covid-19 public health crisis highlight workplaces as potential sources of transmission. Added to the rise of the informal economy and platform working and impacts of climate change on OSH, there is still much to do to protect workers across the entire value chain. We need action by policy-makers, Governments, regulators, organisations and workers to driver a safer and healthier world of work, and one that revitalises and ‘builds back better and healthier.

“As the world’s largest body for professionals dedicated to occupational safety and health, our charitable objects direct us to pursue the vision of a safe and healthy world of work. Our mission supports this, and our members dedicate their working lives to the protection of workers health and safety, the prevention of harm, building sustainable workforces and supporting their colleagues to lead healthy, productive lives.”

IOSH is joined by Ministers, MEPs, trade union leaders and top occupational safety and health experts in signing the manifesto.

Vanessa added: “Our Catch the Wave campaign highlights how setting high standards in the treatment of workforces, communities and supply chains will reward everyone. Let’s work together to make our shared vision a reality.”

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