For #IWMD23 retail and distribution trade union Usdaw is promoting the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) theme of ‘Organising health and safety within the workplace’. Making the case for strong laws, strong enforcement and strong unions to help Health and Safety Reps organise, inspect and protect.
- Organise: Usdaw workplace reps have the tools, support and training they need to help keep members healthy and safe.
- Inspect: Usdaw Reps can use their legal functions to inspect the workplace, investigate accidents and consult with the workers they represent.
- Protect: Usdaw uses its bargaining strength to make sure that workplace health and safety policies are functioning properly. National campaigns, like ‘Freedom from Fear’ and a ‘New Deal for Workers’ give all workers a voice and to secure new legal rights.
Paddy Lillis – Usdaw General Secretary says: “International Workers’ Memorial Day is when the labour movement remembers those who have been killed or injured at work and those who have died from occupational diseases. So on 28 April we ‘remember the dead and fight for the living’ by highlighting our all year round campaigning for better health and safety.
“Health and safety at work is a right not a privilege. Keeping members safe is one of the key aims of Usdaw. This involves ensuring safe working practices and environments, safety training, ensuring the supply of personal protective equipment, and advising members and reps on all other aspects of safety at work.
“Usdaw has thousands of trained Safety Reps across the UK who are instrumental in maintaining a safe workplace and who work with management to prevent accidents. Usdaw also has experts in its health and safety section at head office who, along with the Union’s network of area organisers, offer important advice and support to reps and members.
“The Health and Safety Executive brings unions and employers together, but funding cuts and Government policies have weakened its effectiveness. That is why Usdaw is calling for a reversal of the HSE cuts. We also want to see more HSE and local authority inspectors to enforce health and safety law and for the inspectors to work with Union Safety Reps when they do workplace inspections.
“Usdaw Reps across the country will be bringing Workers Memorial Day into their workplaces, publicising the importance of health and safety and in some areas participating in public ceremonies and events. I wish them well in their commemorations and campaigning.”
Notes for editors:
Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK’s fifth biggest trade union with over 350,000 members. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemical industry and other trades www.usdaw.org.uk
For Usdaw press releases visit: http://www.usdaw.org.uk/news and you can follow us on Twitter @UsdawUnion