Since 2003, the ILO celebrates the World Day for Safety and Health at Work on 28 April to promote the prevention of occupational accidents and diseases globally. This date is also the International Commemoration Day for Dead and Injured Workers organized worldwide by the trade union movement since 1996. Its purpose is to honour the memory of victims of occupational accidents and diseases by organizing worldwide mobilizations and awareness campaigns on this date.
This year’s World Day for Safety and Health at Work is taking place in a context of the COVID-19 global pandemic that highlights even more the critical importance of safety and health at work for workers’ life and well-being.
The theme of the 2020 World Day for Safety and Health at Work is “Stop the pandemic: Safety and health at work can save lives”, encouraging the effective implementation of occupational safety and health prevention and mitigation measures in response to this pandemic and the prevention and control of risks emerging from new working arrangements.
Many of us have been working from home for the last few weeks and had to adjust to this unusual situation, while the closure measures also required many of us to adapt our private lives and combine everything under one roof. Others had to continue going to the office despite the risks that this entailed. It is only with solidarity that we can address the many challenges of this complex situation.
The Staff Union is in close contact with staff and continuously transmits to the Administration the various concerns raised. With the decision of a number of countries to lift the lockdown measures and initiate a progressive de-confinement soon, the ILO has also started the planning of a return to offices. Safety and health of all staff is the priority in this process.
The Staff Union remains vigilant, active and collaborative, now more than ever, to ensure that the Office puts in place all necessary preventive and protective measures to preserve your safety and health. We work hard, through the appropriate channels and bodies, to make sure staff voices are heard. The Committee on Occupational Safety and Health has an important role in this regard, at HQ as well as in the Field.
We take this opportunity to also salute the work of the many workers out there keeping our societies going despite the risks, such as supermarket workers, sanitation and waste disposal workers, health workers and emergency responders in public services, security personnel and many others.
Stay safe, stay healthy
The Staff Union is by your side