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Every year since 1945 more people have died around the world from work-related accidents and diseases than have been killed in wars

May 2006
Sheila Pantry OBE

This statement made by Roger Bibbings, The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents Occupational (RoSPA) Safety Adviser, was the most sombre one received in the many press releases marking the 28 April 2006 World Day for Safety and Health at Work. He went on to say "Efforts to raise health and safety at work standards throughout the world must be seen as a key dimension of sustainable development. The right to a safe and healthy workplace is also a basic human right".

At the same time it is heartening to see the many efforts being made by organisations, unions, trainers and others to help promote the health and safety message to people in all occupations and locations worldwide.

Roger Bibbings continued "RoSPA believes that there is much more that leading players in the UK health and safety system can do to spread good health and safety practice around the globe".

"Every organisation committed to higher standards of health and safety should be reviewing what more it can do to extend its influence internationally".

"Global organisations and higher performers can do much to promote better standards through international supply chains. They can lobby and partner with government and non-government organisations to integrate health and safety risk management into their various aid and development programmes".

"Trade associations can press for a sharper focus on health and safety standards in international trade negotiations. Professional organisations can extend their information services and training to key professionals in developing countries".

"RoSPA is continuing to make the promotion of health and safety internationally one of the criteria in selecting winners in its prestigious awards programme currently in its 50th year. RoSPA is anxious to link up wherever possible with other organisations that can help to promote the global health and safety at work message."

May 2006 OSHWORLD FOCUS draws attention to the forthcoming conference International Networking Conference on Occupational Safety, to be held from 12 - 15 September 2006 in The Netherlands. Joy Oh, policymaker of the Dutch Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment who is one of the organizers says "Accidents will be reduced by 40% through new safety culture on the workplace" and "Occupational accidents will be reduced by 30 till 40 percent if we change the company culture.

FOCUS also draws attention to the ILO/ACTRAV release of new posters to strengthen the ratification of a number of health and safety Conventions.

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Wishing you a zero accident, incident-free and healthy year in 2006 in your workplace!