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28 April 2021 campaign theme: Health and safety is a fundamental right at work

  • 28 de Abril Jornada Internacional de Conmemoración (JIC) de los Trabajadores Fallecidos y Heridos
  • 28 Avril Journée Internationale de Commémoration (JIC) des travailleurs décédés et blessés
  • 28 April International Workers’ Memorial Day
  • 28 April International commemoration day for dead and injured workers
  • 28 April International day of mourning

 

The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed an occupational health crisis in workplaces worldwide. Workers are routinely denied even basic health and safety protections, including consultation with safety reps and safety committees on ‘Covid-safe’ policies and practices, free access to personal protective equipment and protection from victimisation for raising health and safety concerns. But the same problems existed before the pandemic and resulted in millions of deaths each year from work-related injuries and diseases.

The pandemic demonstrates why health and safety must be a right for everyone who works. Illness anywhere threatens illness everywhere. Unions secured agreement at the International Labour Conference in 2019 that occupational health and safety should be recognised as an International Labour Organisation (ILO) fundamental right at work – the decent, universally accepted and binding rights protecting all workers, everywhere. The ILO Centenary Declaration accepts “safe and healthy working conditions are fundamental to decent work”.

On 28 April 2021, unions can send a message that health and safety protection at work must be recognised as a right for all. Whether it is Covid or occupational cancers, or workplace injuries and industrial diseases, every worker should have a right to a voice and a right to protection. No-one should have to die to make a living.

Resources and updates will be posted on the dedicated 28 April webpages: www.28april.org

ITUC Campaign Brief

28 April 2021 campaign theme: Health and safety is a fundamental right at work.

  • 28 de Abril Jornada Internacional de Conmemoración (JIC) de los Trabajadores Fallecidos y Heridos
  • 28 Avril Journée Internationale de Commémoration (JIC) des travailleurs décédés et blessés
  • 28 April International Workers’ Memorial Day
  • 28 April International commemoration day for dead and injured workers
  • 28 April International day of mourning

 

 

The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed an occupational health crisis in workplaces worldwide. Workers are routinely denied even basic health and safety protections, including consultation with safety reps and safety committees on ‘Covid-safe’ policies and practices, free access to personal protective equipment and protection from victimisation for raising health and safety concerns. But the same problems existed before the pandemic and resulted in millions of deaths each year from work-related injuries and diseases.

The pandemic demonstrates why health and safety must be a right for everyone who works. Illness anywhere threatens illness everywhere. Unions secured agreement at the International Labour Conference in 2019 that occupational health and safety should be recognised as an International Labour Organisation (ILO) fundamental right at work – the decent, universally accepted and binding rights protecting all workers, everywhere. The ILO Centenary Declaration accepts “safe and healthy working conditions are fundamental to decent work”.

On 28 April 2021, unions can send a message that health and safety protection at work must be recognised as a right for all. Whether it is Covid or occupational cancers, or workplace injuries and industrial diseases, every worker should have a right to a voice and a right to protection. No-one should have to die to make a living.

Resources and updates will be posted on the dedicated 28 April webpages: www.28april.org

ITUC Campaign Brief

Thème de la campagne à l’occasion du 28 avril 2021: la santé et la sécurité sont un droit fondamental au travail

 

La pandémie de Covid-19 a mis en évidence une crise de la santé au travail aux quatre coins du monde. Les travailleurs et travailleuses sont régulièrement privés des protections même élémentaires en matière de sécurité et de santé, notamment la consultation des représentants et des comités de sécurité en ce qui concerne les politiques et pratiques sûres dans le cadre de la Covid-19, le libre accès à l’équipement de protection individuelle et la protection contre les représailles pour avoir soulevé des préoccupations concernant la santé et la sécurité. Toutefois, ces problèmes existaient déjà avant la pandémie, entraînant des millions de décès, chaque année, liés à des lésions et maladies professionnelles .

La pandémie montre pourquoi la santé et la sécurité doivent constituer un droit pour toutes les personnes qui travaillent. La maladie, où qu’elle survienne, constitue une menace à sa transmission partout ailleurs. Lors de la Conférence internationale du travail en 2019, les syndicats ont obtenu que l’Organisation internationale du travail (OIT) doive reconnaître la santé et la sécurité au travail comme un droit fondamental au travail – principes de travail décent, universellement acceptés et contraignants en vue de protéger tous les travailleurs dans le monde entier. La Déclaration du centenaire de l’OIT reconnaît que « des conditions de travail sûres et salubres sont fondamentales au travail décent. »

Le 28 avril 2021, les syndicats pourront envoyer un message indiquant que la protection de la santé et de la sécurité au travail doit être reconnue comme un droit pour tous. Qu’il s’agisse de la Covid-19 ou de cancers professionnels, ou d’accidents du travail et de maladies professionnelles, tous les travailleurs doivent avoir le droit à la parole, ainsi que le droit à la protection. Personne ne doit risquer de mourir pour gagner sa vie.

Une documentation et des mises à jour seront publiées sur les pages web consacrées au 28 avril: www.28april.org.

Dossier de campagne de la CSI

Thème de la campagne à l’occasion du 28 avril 2021: la santé et la sécurité sont un droit fondamental au travail

La pandémie de Covid-19 a mis en évidence une crise de la santé au travail aux quatre coins du monde. Les travailleurs et travailleuses sont régulièrement privés des protections même élémentaires en matière de sécurité et de santé, notamment la consultation des représentants et des comités de sécurité en ce qui concerne les politiques et pratiques sûres dans le cadre de la Covid-19, le libre accès à l’équipement de protection individuelle et la protection contre les représailles pour avoir soulevé des préoccupations concernant la santé et la sécurité. Toutefois, ces problèmes existaient déjà avant la pandémie, entraînant des millions de décès, chaque année, liés à des lésions et maladies professionnelles .

La pandémie montre pourquoi la santé et la sécurité doivent constituer un droit pour toutes les personnes qui travaillent. La maladie, où qu’elle survienne, constitue une menace à sa transmission partout ailleurs. Lors de la Conférence internationale du travail en 2019, les syndicats ont obtenu que l’Organisation internationale du travail (OIT) doive reconnaître la santé et la sécurité au travail comme un droit fondamental au travail – principes de travail décent, universellement acceptés et contraignants en vue de protéger tous les travailleurs dans le monde entier. La Déclaration du centenaire de l’OIT reconnaît que « des conditions de travail sûres et salubres sont fondamentales au travail décent. »

Le 28 avril 2021, les syndicats pourront envoyer un message indiquant que la protection de la santé et de la sécurité au travail doit être reconnue comme un droit pour tous. Qu’il s’agisse de la Covid-19 ou de cancers professionnels, ou d’accidents du travail et de maladies professionnelles, tous les travailleurs doivent avoir le droit à la parole, ainsi que le droit à la protection. Personne ne doit risquer de mourir pour gagner sa vie.

Une documentation et des mises à jour seront publiées sur les pages web consacrées au 28 avril: www.28april.org.

Dossier de campagne de la CSI

Africa: African Regional Organisation of the International Trade Union Confederation

ITUC-Africa issued the following statement in English and French to mark International Workers’ Memorial Day 2020.

https://www.ituc-africa.org/+-THE-TRADE-UNION-BATTLE-AGAINST-COVID-19-+.html

Global: ITUC survey shows gaps in provison of PPE and safe work conditions

ITUC Global COVID-19 Survey: Global gaps in adequate provision of PPE and preparation of safe workplaces to protect workers from spread of Covid-19 in spotlight

As lockdowns are eased in some countries with partial re-openings of workplaces, government and employer preparations to protect workers from Covid-19 as they return to work are in the spotlight. Trade unions from just one in five (21%) countries would rate the measures that are in place to protect workers from the spread of the virus at work as good. Most (54% or 58 countries) would rate these protections as fair. Twenty-six countries (24%) would rate the protections as poor.

28-04-2020

The findings in the third ITUC Global Covid-19 Survey of 148 trade unions from 107 countries, including 17 G20 countries and 35 OECD countries carried out between 20th April – 23 April 2020 show the gaps in access to safe workplaces and global concerns on the provision of personal protective equipment for health and care workers.

“Preparing workers to return to work safely in consultation with unions is a critical next step in the response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Workers need official recognition of Covid-19 as an occupational disease and governments to require reporting and recording of work-related cases, as well as compensation schemes and medical care for victims for work-related Covid-19 and for their bereaved families. Governments in Australia, Denmark, Germany and Malaysia are showing the way – others must follow.

Globally, occupational health and safety must be included by the International Labour Organization as a fundamental right with global standards to protect workers,” said Sharan Burrow, General Secretary, International Trade Union Confederation.

Almost one in five countries (17%) say they are undertaking partial re-opening of workplaces, businesses and community spaces.

Of the 19 countries planning a partial or full re-opening:

  • Just five rate the protections in place for workers as good.
  • Six rate the protections in place as poor.
  • Eight would rate the protections as fair.

In the Americas 44% of countries say measures for safe workplace are poor, and in Africa 41% of countries say workplace safety is poor. Only 25% of countries in Europe rate measures to protect workers from the spread of the virus as good.

While many countries continue to respond to high levels of infections and deaths, shortages of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for health and care workers is a serious issue in the majority of countries.

Under half (49%) of countries said that they always or very often have adequate supplies of PPE available for all health workers and care workers responding to the virus. Fifty-one per cent of countries said PPE supplies are sometimes, rarely or never adequate, exposing the risks faced by millions of frontline health and care workers responding to the pandemic.

“Frontline workers including health and care workers are putting their lives on the line to care for Covid-19 patients. The failures to supply enough PPE for workers puts workers, patients and communities at risk and has led to lawsuits by in the US by the New York Nurses Association. On International Workers Memorial Day we remember all those wh have died at work or from work-related diseases and we pledge to fight for the living. Workers must have secure supplies of PPE, and the G20 has a responsibility to ensure trade flows of PPE are not restricted and that prices are stabalised, ” said Sharan Burrow.

The ITUC Global Covid-19 Survey, which includes tracking data from countries which responded in the week of 20th April – 23 April found:

  • The majority of countries (61%) are containing the spread of the virus with national lockdown measures including the closure of schools and non-essential businesses.
  • Most (54% or 58 countries) believe their government is responding quite well, while just 12% (13 countries) believe their government is responding very well.
  • Thirty-four per cent (36 countries) believe that their government is responding badly. This includes 27 (25%) that believe they are responding badly and 9 (8%) that believe they are responding very badly.
  • Just over half (51% or 55 countries) believe that employers are responding badly to the needs of workers. Nine countries (or 8%) believe that employers are responding very badly.

“In many countries the struggle will be to keep the meaures governments have put in place for income and wage protection, while in many countries the struggle to achieve guarantees of decent work with jobs, income and social protection has just deepened. Social dialogue between unions, governments and employers is critical. The world cannot go back to business as usual – recovery plans must ensure a socially just future,” said Sharan Burrow.

Read the Third ITUC Global Covid-19 Survey Key Findings.

https://www.ituc-csi.org/ituc-global-covid-19-survey-20april

South Africa: We mourn the loss of life for workers all around the world – COSATU

We mourn the loss of life for workers all around the world who have lost their lives at work. #COVIDー19 is a workplace related disease and we want occupational health and safety to become a fundamental right” Sharan Burrow,ITUC General Secretary #IWMD20 👉bit.ly/2SdSpzH

Global: A 28 April message from Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation


April 28 is International Workers’ Memorial Day or Workers’ Mourning Day. This is the international day of remembrance and action for workers killed, disabled, injured or made unwell by their work. More here: https://www.ituc-csi.org/28April2020

Global: COVID-19 should be classified as an occupational disease – ITUC/Global Unions

The ITUC and its Global Unions partners are calling for COVID-19 to be classified as an occupational disease in order to ensure stronger workplace protections and access to compensation as well as to medical care. The call is being made today [28 April], on International Workers’ Memorial Day.

“While there are many aspects of the SARS-CoV-2 virus which are yet unclear, one thing that is clear is that most transmission is occurring in workplaces such as hospitals and care facilities, as well as in workplaces where transmission can occur between workers with the public.

“There is already evidence that in numerous countries, protective workplace measures such as distancing and personal equipment are insufficient or even absent. Workers are being made to take risks that shouldn’t be taken, and in some cases, such as in Amazon warehouses, they face sanctions or dismissal for raising safety concerns. Bringing COVID-19 into occupational disease classification is crucial to stopping this and reducing the spread of the virus. This is becoming even more urgent as countries begin to relax restrictions on economic sectors and public spaces,” said ITUC General Secretary Sharan Burrow.

Occupational disease classification would mean that where workers are infected with the virus, the presumption would be that it is workplace-related unless conclusive evidence is presented to the contrary. It would also reinforce public health measures which are in place and which will evolve in the coming months and years.

“We are also calling for occupational health and safety to be given the status of a fundamental right at the International Labour Organization. This is a long-overdue measure which would give workers’ protection from death and disease the same priority as freedom of association, collective bargaining and protection from discrimination, forced labour and child labour,” said Burrow.

Council of Global Unions Statement on Recognition of COVID-19 as an Occupational Disease * ITUC news release * COVID-19 Pandemic: News from unions