Get involved in European Week for Safety and Health at Work 2019

Hundreds of events will be taking place across Europe to raise awareness of the management of dangerous substances during European Week for Safety and Health at Work from 21 to 25 October 2019.

The week is organised by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), and this year’s theme will be its current campaign ‘Healthy Workplaces Manage Dangerous Substances’.

The campaign was launched in 2018 and aims to highlight the importance of managing dangerous substances at work to help prevent ill health in Europe.

Cancer, respiratory illnesses and skin diseases are some of the health issues caused by exposure to hazardous substances at work. These include chemicals such as paints, glues and disinfectants; carcinogens including asbestos, diesel engine exhaust emissions and silica dust; and natural materials like grain dust and crude oil.

In Europe, almost 80,000 people die a year from cancer caused by carcinogenic exposure at work.

IOSH is an official partner of EU-OSHA’s campaign. The initiative aligns with IOSH’s No Time to Lose (NTTL) campaign which aims to raise awareness of occupational cancer globally and help businesses take action by providing free practical resources.

IOSH has collaborated with EU-OSHA on a range of initiatives to promote the campaign, from sharing resources online to participating in workshops at the ‘Fight against Occupational Cancer Conference’ in Vienna and ‘Carcinogens – Multidisciplinary collaboration’ event in Brussels.

NTTL ambassadors have presented slides on the campaign at more than 40 events organised by IOSH branches, groups and NTTL supporters. EU-OSHA has also promoted NTTL by developing a good practice case study on the campaign and sharing our free resources on its campaign website.

Bev Messinger, IOSH Chief Executive, encouraged IOSH members to get involved in European Week and said:

“Reducing exposures to work-related health hazards is a vital part of our Work 2022 strategy. It is at the heart of what our 47,000 members advising businesses in EU member states and other countries strive to do every day.

“IOSH is proud to support EU-OSHA’s campaign to improve the management of dangerous substances. We have been aligning aspects of our own No Time to Lose campaign activity with that of EU-OSHA so our voice, unified with others, will help to raise awareness, share good practice and improve standards of management.”

“I encourage IOSH members to get involved in the European Week for Safety and Health at Work to help raise awareness of this significant health issue.”

Heike Klempa, Campaigns Manager at EU-OSHA, said:

“Raising awareness about dangerous substances, especially carcinogens, is one of the key objectives of our campaign. IOSH has been contributing to this aim in their role as official campaign partner and media partner by spreading our messages and campaign materials to their large network throughout Europe and globally.

“Together we can promote a prevention culture as the exposure to and the health impact of dangerous substances in the workplace is still not well understood by everyone concerned.”

IOSH members can get involved in the European Week for Safety and Health at Work in a number of ways from downloading and distributing the campaign resources to joining an event and sharing on social media.

To find out more, visit www.iosh.com/euoshahealthyworkplaces.