World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


Life and health at work is not an option, it’s a right

Life and health at work is not an option, it’s a right

Brussels, 25 April 2014 (ITUC OnLine): Despite the world’s outcry which followed the death of 1.138 workers in the collapse of the Rana Plaza factory building in Bangladesh a year ago, or the silent death of more than 107,000 workers a year due to asbestos exposure, workers around the world continue to see employers and governments prioritising “competitiveness” or cutting vital inspection and enforcement services and removing regulatory protection over workers’ lives and health.

Sharan Burrow, ITUC General Secretary said “We receive reports of workers dead, injured or suffering from diseases contracted at their workplaces every day – and with chronic underreporting in official statistics, experts estimate that around a million workers are injured every day! There is a systemic failure when working people have to choose between their own lives and their family income on a daily basis.”

These men and women are not just numbers. They are members of a community which will remember them on this 28th of April, where workers across the world will unite on the International Commemoration Day for Dead and Injured Workers to commemorate the victims of employers’ reckless behaviour. Through this day, the ITUC aims to show the critical role played by rights, regulation and enforcement in saving lives.

“If workers are not given a voice and the information on the risks they incur, and the power to ensure those are reduced to a minimum, if regulation is not in place to protect the weakest in the value chain, if governments let companies act with no control, then we should not be surprised that the death toll increases every day,” said Burrow.

“Proper union representation, training, respect and independence for occupational health and safety committees, ontheground knowledge of workers – these are all crucial to saving lives and health.”

Yet, in the name of competitiveness and public deficit reduction, governments are implementing austerity measures that are eating away at vital regulatory functions that protect workers and their families, such as labour inspectorates.

28th of April this year will also see an important mobilisation to highlight the terrible conditions faced by migrant workers in Qatar, who have no labour rights, exploitative wages and face extreme occupational health and safety risks.

A Google map and details of International Workers’ Memorial Day events worldwide can be found on the ITUC/Hazards 28 April webpage. www.hazards.org/wmd

Read also Anabella Rosemberg’s blog in Equal Times: http://www.equaltimes.org/this-is-how-we-will-win-the-fight#.U1qBRFe8z30

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

UN Health Agency Responds To Ebola Spike

UN health agency responds to Ebola spike by deploying team on border of Guinea and Guinea-Bissau More>>

UN Casts Israel As World's Worst Violator Of Health Rights

Israel's army team of medics recently treated 1,600 victims of the Nepal earthquake. More>>

W Thousands Flee Syria’s Besieged Historic City Of Palmyra

As thousands flee Syria’s besieged historic city of Palmyra, UN refugee agency readies response plan More>>

UN Agency To Halt Housing Allowance For Palestine Refugees

Lack of funds forces UNRWA to suspend cash assistance for housing for Palestinian refugees from Syria in Lebanon. Photo: UNRWA/Shafiq Fahed More>>


Bangkok: International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia, Biphophia

BMA, UN, embassy representatives, civil society and artists stand united with LGBTI Thais on International Day against Transphobia, Homophobia, and Biphobia (IDAHOT) at Bangkok Art and Culture Centre More>>

Displaced Iraqis Face Difficulties As Fighting Continues

UNHCR is concerned about the processing arrangements in place at the Bzabz bridge – a series of pontoons across the Euphrates River which marks the boundary between Anbar province and the capital, Baghdad. Photo: UNHCR/G. Ohara More>>

UNESCO Chief Condemns Killing Of Bangladeshi Blogger

Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Irina Bokova. UN Photo/Devra Berkowitz The head of the United Nations agency with a mandate to defend freedom of expression and press freedom worldwide today voiced ... More>>

Philadelphia: Train Crash

Five people have been confirmed dead and more than 136 people injured after an Amtrak train crashed in Philadelphia today at 9.20pm local time.More>>

UN News: Alarming Surge In Bay Of Bengal Crossings

The number of irregular migrants crossing the Bay of Bengal has almost doubled over the past year amid a dangerous uptick in human smuggling and trafficking across the region, according to a new report from the United Nations refugee agency. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news