Health and safety 'as important as ever'
Posted by Nicole Stevens.
Health and safety awareness, which could include things such as the use of health and safety signage in the workplace, is still as important as it ever was, the Trades Union Congress (TUC) has said.
A new report by the TUC, published yesterday, reveals that over 20,000 people are killed too early by their work every year. The TUC says that the "myth" that the UK is one of the world's safest places to work should be re-examined, in the Case for Health and Safety report.
When the equivalent population number of the Orkney Islands dies prematurely as a result of work each year, the trade union is calling on the government to ignore calls to reduce regulation, raise awareness on the issue, utilise the 150,000-strong network of trained health and safety officials, and back the work of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
It also wants a government health and safety tsar to be appointed.
Brendan Barber, the general secretary of the TUC, said: "Despite the way that health and safety is often pilloried, for those who are made ill or injured at work and for the relatives of those who have died as a result of their work, health and safety is no joke.
"Fatalities are not just statistics - they are real people, with lives and families - and any fall in inspections and enforcement will lead to an increase in accidents, injuries and deaths, and will have a huge impact on the already grave problem of workplace diseases."
The HSE estimates that 246,000 workplace injuries should have been reported last year but many accidents go unreported or are not reported correctly.
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