Global | DM
28 April is the World Day for Safety and Health at Work. This day is held annually as an international campaign to promote safe, healthy and decent workand has been observed by the International Labour Organization (ILO) since 2003 to stress the prevention of accidents and diseases at work.
The 2017 campaign focuses on the importance for countries to improve their capacity to collect and utilize reliable occupational safety and health data. Past campaigns have highlighted workplace stress, building a culture of prevention, and promoting safety and health in a green economy.
The United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development describes a global plan of action, including Sustainable Development Goal 8 “decent work for all”. A critical part of this is the need for safe work, and to assess this, one key measure is how often fatal and non-fatal occupational injuries occur. Valuable occupational safety and health data goes beyond the simple collection of the number of injuries and examines who was injured, the type of work they were doing, and why – and uses this to set priorities, to measure progress, as well as, to prevent further injuries from occurring.
What has the UN Secretariat done in this regard?
To meet our duty of care to staff and those who might be affected by our work, collecting practical occupational safety and health data is a key part of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Framework that the United Nations has adopted for our workplaces. Some elements of this Framework are expected to be formalised this year, such as an OSH policy and training opportunities, while others such as our incident reporting capability will undergo further development to better collect information on injuries and illnesses.
All of us are responsible for preventing injuries and deaths while on the job. Employers are accountable for ensuring that our working environment is safe and healthy. Staff members are responsible for working safely to protect ourselves, knowing our rights and participating in the application of preventive measures.
For more information:
- visit the ILO page on The World Day for Safety and Health at Work and International Labour Standards on Occupational Safety and Health.
- on UN occupational safety and health measures, please contact the UN OSH Working Group [Ms Melat Kelkay].
- UN website on World Day for Safety and Health at Work