IOE is steadfast in its commitment for ongoing dialogue on strengthening occupational safety and health at work

As the world struggles with the health and economic consequences of Covid-19, IOE continues to make every effort to protect lives in the workplace and engage in international debates to strengthen existing OSH norms.

The International Organisation of Employers (IOE) calls attention to its consistent position to take part in discussions on the core importance of occupational safety and health (OSH) at work. As part of this engagement, we ask that the International Labour Organization (ILO) strengthen its efforts to build on the consensus achieved in the ILO Centenary Declaration through a process of productive social dialogue. IOE’s global network looks forward to engaging in this constructive dialogue with governments and workers.

Since the World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global pandemic, IOEhas been actively mobilising its network to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on business continuity and survival and assisting members with managing health and safety risks.

We remind governments, workers and employers that compliance with existing public health regulations, and relevant as well as up-to-date safety and health standards at work are more central than ever to achieve strong business performance and productivity. Workers and employers need certainty and consistency in the guidance on the return to the office or working facilities. There also needs to be much more ambition in the enforcement of current regulations in order to do what is necessary to save lives and livelihoods.

In the statement from the Employers’ spokesperson marking World Day for Safety and Health at Work on 28 April 2020, we provided expertise as the key to developing safe back-to-work strategies following the global pandemic which are aligned with those from WHO and the ILO. We also actively participated in the international campaign, spearheaded by the ILO, to raise awareness of the importance of occupational safety and health.

IOE has supported its members and partner companies with developing effective policies and action for safe back-to-work strategies. We advocated that governments and companies in different sectors of the economy, which apply the principle of prevention as a top priority, are better placed to navigate the crisis and implement more effective safe back-to-work strategies. As declared by IOE Secretary-General during the World Health and Safety Congress this week: "Those who believe that health and safety will remain the same post-Covid-19 are wrong. OSH will be a top priority. There won't be a quick or sustainable recovery if we don't approach it properly at the workplace."

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