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Algeria


 

Algerian Trade Unions Join Tri-Partite Events The Union Générale des Travailleurs Agériens (UGTA) will be involved tomorrow 28 April in a series of events hosted by the Ministry of Employment and Social Security to commemorate "Safe and Healthy Workplaces: Making Decent Work a Reality."

About 150 participants will be involved in the day, which will be organized with the ‘National Institute for the Prevention of Occupational Risks’ and also involve employers, medical practitioners, public & occupational health specialists, as well as representatives from the Ministries of Environment, Finance, Health and Labour. Representatives from the country's inspections services, the ILO and media are also scheduled to attend.

A tour will take place at the Port D’Oran or a selected enterprise and a special exhibit for the day has been prepared.

Presentations throughout the day will deal with standards and regulations, inspections, occupational risks, Decent Work, and other themes. The day will hear speakers from all sectors, including trade unions

More than 750 Algerian workers died from some 50.000 workplace accidents in 2006 (conservative estimate), costing 10 million dinars (108 millions Euros), plus 1.500.000 lost work days.

Source: ITUC

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Andean Community (Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru & Venezuela)


 

Andean Community Formally Adopts 28 April

On this 28 April a decision taken in 2005 by the Andean Community of nations will come into force, henceforth making 28 April a “Andean Day for Health and Safety at Work” that will apply to its four member countries: Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and to their associate member, Venezuela. The decision will eventually bring to nineteen the total number of countries in the world, officially recognising 28 April. The representatives of the Andean Community are chosen by the National Congresses of the respective countries.

The adoption of 28 April was taken in 2005 at a health and safety seminar in Lima Peru (where 28 April was already recognized) coordinated by the ‘Instituto Laboral Andino’ (ILA) and the ‘Comite Sindical Andino de Salud Laboral y Medio Ambiente’ (CCLA), which brought the various Parties together from the five countries. The Decision No. 584 suggested that the Parties consider AIDS prevention and banning asbestos as a focus of attention and these possible themes have yet to be discussed by the Parties for implementation.

The ILA and CCLA have also been involved in coordination of activities in the five countries, plus Venezuela for this 28 April:

In Bolivia an official commemoration ceremony involving the Labour Ministry and other related OHS Ministries. Information on health and safety standards will be produced for massive distribution, along with a flag, stickers, and special plaques. Visual flyers will be produced for distribution at sports events and activities will be organized at an exhibition of industrial equipment. Radio and television publicity information will be broadcast and an OHS course will organized by trade unions and employer organizations. A Web page will further distribute information.

In Colombia the ‘Dirección General de Riesgos Profesionales del Ministerio de la Protección Social de Colombia’ will organise a videoconference with trade unions, joining 32 territories. As a follow up between next July and December, it will organize a public information programme about the Decision 584 and a proposal to reach over 9000 workers through occupational health and safety seminars, organized in 32 Departments.

In Ecuador The Labour Minister will host a 28 April commemoration ceremony and will provide technical support to worker and employer organizations for activities that will take place in workplaces during the Andean week.

In Peru an exhibition of health and safety equipment will be organized, bringing together equipment suppliers and emergency services personnel. A national seminar will be organized on occupational health & safety and planning will take place to prepare for follow up to the 2005 ‘Seminario Regional Andino de Salud Laboral y Medio Ambiente’ that was responsible for Decision 584 . Street banners announcing the day will be erected in the capital and a wide-range of materials will be produced for massive distribution through government Ministries, media outlets, workplace health and safety committees, transportation outlets and other locations. There are additional plans to organize workplace inspection activities throughout 2007.

In Venezuela a special committee has organized two commemoration events. The first will bring together representatives from five trade union centres to discuss priorities for prevention and OHS services. The second next 16 May will take place at a seminar for 100 selected workers to discuss OHS issues.

Contact Carlos Ortiz Cornejo

Source: ITUC

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Argentina


 

Argentina Plans High Profile OHS Week for ICD

Upward of 2000 people will attend a four-day health and safety conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina, which will be part of a whole week of ICD activities in that country and will culminate in a commemoration ceremony on 27 April. The event is the fourth of a growing series of activities since 2003 when Argentina made 28 April a national observance day.

The conference is hosted by the Ministry of Employment & Social Security in Argentina, under the auspices of the ILO, ISSA and WHO and is organised by the national agency responsible for work related risks, the ‘Superintendenica de Riesgos Del Trabajo’ (SRT). Anyone can attend at no cost.

Representatives of trade union and worker organizations, along with government and occupational health professionals will be involved in a detailed programme that aims to improve occupational health and safety. More information

Overall, national trade union bodies are involved as are other unions from the gas, electrical, media, laundry, garment and environmental sectors. Unions, professionals and government representatives from Brazil, Chile, Italy, Peru, Spain Uruguay, Venezuela, U.K., U.S., as well as Central America and Europe will be participating, making this conference important from a continental and international point of view.

A heavy emphasis at the conference will be to integrate training and education of workers within a Decent Work progamme and within industrial relations and collective bargaining. Workplace inspections and health services will be key components. The conference is planed as a major contribution to the implementation of occupational health and safety within the country and in all of Latin America.

A web page will tracks and report on the activities of this conference as it unfolds (to be provided later at www.srt.gov.ar)

Contact: Comunicaciones@srt.gov.ar

Source: ITUC / SRT

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Australia


AMWU Workers Memorial Day is the day workers around the globe remember the lives of workers who have been killed or injured on the job

This Saturday activities across Australia will be remembering over 2 million people dead and 400 million injured throughout the world last year.

“Most do not die of mystery ailments, or in tragic "accidents". They die because their employer decided that their safety just was not that important a priority. It’s a staggering and shameful amount of deaths: said Doug Cameron AMWU National Secretary.

“It’s worth remembering that more people have been killed at work than at war.”

In Australia, while annually around 330 workplace fatalities are officially recorded, the number of work related deaths is actually much higher when work-related diseases are included. The International Labour Organisation estimates 7,200 Australians die as a result of their work every year. The ILO also estimates that for every fatal accident there are 1,200 injuries requiring 3 or more days off work and 7,000 near misses.

Cancer, OHS Enforcement and Asbestos and HIV Campaigns are the key themes for this year’s Workers Memorial Day.

Cancer is now the single biggest cause of work-related deaths globally.

Cancer now claims 600,000 lives every year - or one life every 52 seconds.

Despite what we now know, the risks of cancer from work are still played down by governments, enforcement agencies and employers.

The AMWU is joining a global union campaign being launched on April 28 by our international union affiliate the International Metalworkers’ Federation.

“The ‘zero occupational cancer campaign’ aims to highlight to workers and the public, that people today face a workplace cancer risk higher than at any time in history said Phillip Hazelton AMWU National OHS Coordinator.

“One in five workers face a cancer risk from their work and it is now estimated that up to 16% of all cancers are the result of exposures at work,” he said.

The AMWU will be promoting the campaign through information and action ideas to OHS workplace delegates over the coming months.

Events commemorating Workers Memorial Day include:

Sydney: Darling Harbour – Service 1:00pm Saturday 28 April, 2007 Reflection Park, Little Pier Street (opposite Sydney Entertainment Centre)

Parramatta: Unveiling of an IMD plaque. Friday, 27 April 2007 at 12.30pm in Prince Alfred Park, Church Street, Parramatta.

Melbourne: Commemoration - Memorial Stone outside the Victorian Trades Hall, corner of Victoria and Lygon streets in Carlton Friday 27th April 10.30 am

Gippsland: 11.00 am Friday 27th April, Morwell Rose Garden

Canberra: 10.30 am Friday 27th April The Aboriginal Cultural Centre, Yarramundi Reach, Lady Denman Drive, Acton

Brisbane: Memorial Service Monday 30th April 12.15-1.00 pm St Mary’s Cathederal South Brisbane

Adelaide: Memorial Service Friday 27th April 1.30 pm St Francis Xavier Cathederal 39 Wakefield St

Perth: Memorial Service Friday 27th April 9.30 am Solidarity Park Parliament Place West Perth

Contact Person: Phil Hazelton

Contact Email

Source: Hazards Magazine /

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ACTU The Australia Council of Trade Unions has published information on WMD in Australia.

Included in this information is a history of Workers' Memorial Day. Also it provides facts and figures on the poor enforcement record of Comcare - the federal health and safety and compensation system - since it was opened up to big business.

The pages also supply a listing of Australian WMD events.

ACTU 28 April webpages

Source: Hazards Magazine / ACTU

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VTHC Victoria Trades Hall Council has announced its programme for International Workers' Memorial Day - with activities taking pace on Friday 27th April.

VTHC 28 April webpages

Australian Workplace Agreements an unsafe break for workers

Source: Hazards Magazine / VTHC

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Austria


 

Trade unions light candles across Austria
OeGB: The President of the Austrian Trade Union Federation, Rudolf Hundstorfer, will light a candle and speak to the aims of the International Workers' Memorial Day (IWMD) at a public event the Federation has organised in front of its headquarters on April 27th, the Friday before the the Day. A number of our OEGB members and officials will then follow suit by lighting their own candles.

The OeGB has appealed to its members across the country to hold similar ceremonies in their own workplaces, and some of its affiliates, such as the Construction and Woodworkers Federation, have already indicated that they will organise additional events of their own to mark the Day.

In addition, Dr. Walter Sauer of the International Affairs Department has indicated that the Federation is now ready to take the issue of official recognition for International Commemoration Day to the Government of Austria, and to support the initiative of Global Unions to have the Day recognized by the UN General Assembly.

Contact Dr. Walter Sauer

Source: ITUC

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Azerbaijan


 

Azerbaijan: Trade union commemorations and seminars on 28 April The Azerbaiban Trade Union Confederation (AHIK) has announced that it will support the International Trade Union Confederation and all trade unions around the world in its 28 April Workers’ Memorial Day activities. AHIK president S Mekhbalyev said the confederation has honoured workers killed or injured on the job since 2004, when it first established a tradition of commemoration, supported by the country’s Ministry of Labour. “In 2007, as in prior years,” said Mekhbalyev, “our Confederation is making plans to honour labour, and the health of workers on April 28. As part of our plans, we will be holding health & safety seminars in area not before covered.”

Contact: AHIK

Source: ITUC

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Bangladesh


 

OSHE Foundation to target asbestos and decent work for 28 April Bangladesh Occupational Safety, Health and Environment Foundation (OSHE) is to highlighter workplace asbestos risks as part of its 28 April activities.

On 26 April a meeting involving shipbreaking workers in Chittagong will discuss asbestos risks and the case for a ban as part of a larger OSHE/FNV project on the industry.

A 27 April workshop on ‘Making decent Work a Reality in Bangladesh’ will be followed by a press conference where trade unions will call for a national asbestos ban. Bangladesh imports about 1.5 million kg of asbestos per year.

On 28 April itself, OHSE – a foundation created by Bangladesh’s trade unions in 2003 - will organise a ‘Human chain for a ban of asbestos in Bangladesh’ in front of the National Edd Ghah in Dhaka as the focal point of commemoration activities, subject to permission from the authorities.

Contact: A.R. Chowdhury REPON

Source: OSHE/ITUC

Also see OHSE in Hazards images pages

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Belgium


 

Street drama points to Belgian worker fatalities FGTB-CSC: The Belgian trade unions plan a highly visible rally near a main train station in the City of Brussels with 400 white-clad trade unionists who will lie down to symbolically portray the numbers of dead and injured workers in that country over the past year.

Representatives from each organization, the International Trade union Confederation (ITUC) and the International Labour Organisation (ILO) are planned to speak.

Visual displays will also highlight worker fatalities due to cancer and also the victims from small and medium enterprises. Media coverage is expected to be extensive.

At almost the same time on the morning of 27 April the staff of the International Trade Union Confederation and the European Trade Union Confederation will participate in a candle lighting ceremony at their headquarters in Brussels – the International Trade Union House.

Contact Herman Fonck for CSC and Rafael for FGTB

Source: ITUC

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Bermuda


 

Candle lighting at high noon in Bermuda for 28 April The Bermuda Industrial Union will call on its members and the public to turn on their car lights during their drive to work in the morning and to light a candle at 12 noon in commemoration for workers killed or injured during the last year.

Contact Graham Nesbitt

Source: ITUC

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Bolivia


 

Confederación Sindical de Trabajadores de la Construcción de Bolivia En la marcha del día del trabajador constructor (26 de abril), llevaran carteles alusivos a la salud laboral en los planteles.

La ICM Dice ¡ORGANICEN! Sindicatos fuertes, Salven vidas - 28 de abril, ICM. más

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Bosnia and Herzogovina


 

28 April in Bosnia and Herzogovina Bosnia and Herzegovina unions organise 3 Day Seminar.

The Confederation of Independent Trade Unions of Bosnia and Herzegovina (CITU BiH) has organized a Round Table with BH Authorities, employers and trade unionists on this April 27, 2007 to discuss occupational health and safety in the country.

Togehter with the ILO a three days seminar has been organized on "Health and Security in the Workplace". Thirty representatives from throughout the country will attend the meeting in Sarajevo.

Contact Lejla Causevic

Source: ITUC

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Brazil


 

Brazil to Involve Thousands of Workers in International Workers' Memorial Day Activities 28 April celebrations will directly involve more 25 thousand workers throughout Brazil, where hundreds of activities that are planned by trade unions and public institutions, many under the auspices of the Ministry of Labor & Employment, Fundacentro (the National Institute of Occupational Health and Safety) or the Ministry of Health. Trade unions, employers, health professonals and government representatives are expected to participate throughout the country.

Events will commence at the legislative Assembly in Sao Paulo with a candle light ceremony, followed by two round table discussions, one on “Economic Growth & the Occupational Health and Safety of Workers” and the other on the role of the “Public Media and the Security of Workers”.

Overall, 28 April will focus on the Brazilian Government’s Program to Accelerate Economic Growth (PAC), which has created a new impetus for production and consumption activity in the country. However, there is a fear that unless this new trend is integrated with social policy, greater intensification of working hours, exposure to risks and the incidence of workplace accidents, disease and fatalities may result.

Between 1999 and 2003 an estimated 1,875,190 occupational injuries were recorded, costing up to 32 billions Reais (US$ 16 billion) in 2002 alone. Brazil adopted 28 April as a national observance day, five years ago.

Contact Nilton Freitas

Source: ITUC

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Bulgaria


 

CIS Center Initiates 28 April Week in Bulgaria

The SafeDay team in the National Center of Public Health Protection in Bulgaria has prepared a comprehensive programme to highlight 28 April under the ILO theme of ‘World Day for Safety and Health at Work’. A special Webpage has been dedicated to promotion of the Day.

The National Center of Public Health Protection (Bulgarian National Center CIS) has scheduled a press conference on 23 April to begin the week leading up to 28th April, at which speakers will address a number of topics including the Promotional Framework for Occupational Safety and Health Convention 187, and the World Health Organization’s 'Global Plan of Action on Worker's Health’.

Speakers will present the National OSH Profile for Bulgaria, highlighting the priorities of the National OSH Agenda, as well as the involvement of the National Center CIS in the European Semantic Portal on Workplace Safety. Full media coverage and wide stakeholders' involvement are expected for the event. In addition, the CIS has distributed an information package on 28 April, containing data from the ILO Report "Safe and Healthy Workplaces - Making Decent Work Reality (2007)" and the WHO National Cancer Profile, which is also hosted on their website.

The CIS (International Occupational Safety & Health Information Centre) is the knowledge management arm of the ILO’s Programme on Safety and Health at Work and the Environment, whose goal is to ensure that those concerned with worker protection have access to the facts they need to prevent occupational injuries and diseases. It constantly monitors literature on occupational safety and health through contacts with publishers. 140 CIS Centres operate as focal points at the national or regional level, and also work with Collaborating Centres to expand their reach in countries around the world.

Contact Boryana Barbukova

Source: ITUC

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Burkina Faso


 

FTBBF, FNTCS and SNTBB Journée de sensibilisation sur les accidents de travail au profit des femmes travaillant dans le secteur de la construction.

L'IBB dit de s'organiser! Syndicats puissants, vies préservées, IBB. plus

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Canada


CLC: National Day of Mourning April 28, 2007

The theme for the 2007 CLC National Day of Mourning is “Safe and Healthy Workplaces for All Workers.” CLC demands that governments enforce existing laws by providing the necessary tools and resources for this to happen. Lives are not saved by governments simply adopting legislation. Lives are saved by governments enforcing legislation.

The CLC first marked the event in 1984 and since then has grown into a worldwide event observed by unions, central labour bodies, labour councils, municipalities and national governments. The Day of Mourning or Workers Memorial Day, as it is called in Europe, is observed in over a hundred countries worldwide. It has been formerly endorsed by the International Trade Union Congress. Several countries are in the process of formally recognising the Day, following Canada's example in 1991.

It has been over 20 years since the CLC first established the National Day of Mourning. Canada still has workplaces where workers are injured and killed on the job at an increasing rate. This tells us that we must do more to save the lives and livelihood of workers in Canada.

On this day we mourn for those who have lost their lives. However, it is increasingly important to continue to fight for the living.

CLC WMD brochure [pdf]

Source: Hazards magazine / CLC

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CTC: Jour de deuil national, le 28 avril 2007

Le Congrès du travail du Canada a établi le Jour de deuil national il y a plus de 20 ans. Malheureusement, le nombre de travailleuses et de travailleurs blessés au travail ou qui meurent de causes liées au travail continue d’augmenter dans certains milieux de travail. Les faits nous disent que devons faire davantage pour protéger la vie et le gagne-pain des travailleuses et des travailleurs canadiens.

Le 28 avril, Jour de deuil national, approche à grands pas. Le Congrès du travail du Canada a souligné cet événement pour la première fois en 1984. Depuis, le Jour de deuil national est observé à l'échelle mondiale par les syndicats, les centrales syndicales, les conseils du travail, les municipalités et les gouvernements nationaux. Le Jour de deuil, appelé Jour à la mémoire des travailleurs en Europe, est en fait observé dans plus de cent pays. La Confédération syndicale internationale (CSI) l’a reconnu officiellement, et plusieurs pays ont entamé des démarches pour emboîter le pas au Canada, qui l’a reconnu officiellement en 1991.

Cette année, le Congrès du travail du Canada a placé le Jour de deuil national sous le thème « La santé et la sécurité pour tous les travailleurs et travailleuses ». Nous devons demander aux gouvernements d’appliquer les lois existantes en mettant en place des mécanismes et des ressources à cette fin. Les gouvernements peuvent sauver des vies en appliquant les lois.

Aujourd’hui, nous pleurons les travailleuses et les travailleurs disparus. Nous soulignons, par la même occasion, qu’il est de plus en plus important de nous battre pour les vivants.

CTC 28 Avril brochure [pdf]

Source Hazards magazine / CLC

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Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety CCOHS calls the National Day of Mourning - April 28th. This is a day to remember workers who have been injured or killed on the job and focus on preventing further illness, injury and death. CCOHS makes a free poster available. The site includes updated Canadian statistics related to worker injury and death. more

Source: CCOHS

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CAW Day of mourning flag contest This year, CAW is creating a CAW Day of Mourning flag to reaffirm solidarity and commitment to workplace health and safety and state to all that CAW mourns the dead and fights for the living.

The CAW Council's health and Safety Committee invites talented sisters and brothers in CAW to design the CAW flag which must encompass the Day of Mourning theme and the union's diversity. [pdf]

Source: CAW

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Workers Health and Safety Centre The Workers Health and Safety Centre has updated information for the 2007 Day of Mourning including events across Ontario and background materials.

The page will be updated when more community events are arranged and an additional April 28 fact sheet is completed. WHSC pages

Source: WHSC

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Central/Latin America


 

ORIT Unions in the Americas focus on OHS, cancer, HIV for 28 April The ITUC regional organization for the Americas and the Carribean region, ‘Organización Regional Interamericana de Trabajadores’ (ORIT) is encouraging its affiliates to become involved in 28 April activities. Trade union representatives from the Central American region will meet in Managua, Nicaragua, for a meeting organised by ORIT, along with the ‘Coordinadora Sindical de América Central y el Caribe’ (CSACC) and the ‘Instituto Sindical de América Central y el Caribe’ (ISACC).

Because the Central American region is well known for problems associated with pesticides, skin cancer and other diseases, as well as HIV/AIDS, these will be the focus of attention for the ICD. The Commemoration will take place on 27 April. The day afterwards the delegates will return to their respective countries to join their own national activities on the 28 April. In addition, in São Paulo, Brazil, ORIT is coordinating a subregional event with the ‘Education International’ (EI), as well as a commemoration ceremony with Brazilian trade union affiliates at the ORIT headquarters.

Contact Iván González Alvarado

Source: ITUC

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Chad


 

FENATRABAT/CLTT Journée de sensibilisation sur les accidents de travail et les risques professionnels.

L'IBB dit de s'organiser! Syndicats puissants, vies préservées, IBB. plus

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Chile


 

Federación de Trabajadores de las Industrias Metalúrgicas, Eléctricas y Mecánicas (FETRAMECOL) Visita a una fábrica, donde se dará charla de salud y seguridad laboral. (27 de abril).

La ICM Dice ¡ORGANICEN! Sindicatos fuertes, Salven vidas - 28 de abril, ICM. más

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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China


 

A 28 April Candle Glow For China

The candle that was first lit at the United Nations 12 years ago when Global Unions initiated the 28 April event will glow for the first time within the borders of China. It will draw attention to the plight of workers exposed to cadmium cancer and other occupational health and safety hazards in that country’s booming economy.

The 28 April candle has been lit each year since 1996 in different countries around the world as a symbol of the need to transform work practices that foster illness & disease, and those that kill or injure workers. This year the 28 April candle will be lit at a specific location in China (to be announced) and serve to highlight the plight of cadmium and other workers who remain at risk in China.

Three weeks ago, the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) launched a global campaign with the NGO “Globalization Monitor – GM” targeting three Chinese subsidiaries of Gold Peak Batteries International Limited in connection with the poisoning of workers by cadmium. The company at the centre of attention is 53.4 per cent owned by Gold Peak (Holdings) of Hong Kong [6]. For information about the company

Human lungs, kidneys and bone tissue are particularly vulnerable to long term exposures to cadmium, which is a known carcinogen for humans. This Gold Peak case is replete with reports of exposure abuses, deficient monitoring and suspicious risk analysis by company and local authorities, complicated by worker fatalities, sickness, unresolved disputes, strikes, court actions and non-reinstatement of workers to their jobs. Workers have also been denied full and fair compensation.

Gold Peak Industries produces and markets batteries, electronic components, cables, acoustical and light-fitting materials. In addition to its operations in China and Hong Kong, the company has a manufacturing network that extends to Singapore and Malaysia and a marketing network that reaches Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Philippines, Poland, South Korea, Sweden, Thailand, The Netherlands, Taiwan and the U.K.

Cadmium-related issues with this group of companies have received wide publicity. Fatalities have been reported, as have sixteen cases of confirmed cadmium poisonings and 400 more with excessive exposure. An additional 600, mostly young female workers have been denied annual medical check ups and continue to be at risk.

These poisonings are taking place in China, where the sheer volume of worker deaths, injury or illness defy the imagination. Ten workplace accident fatalities per 100,000 Chinese workers (compared to one fatality per 100 thousand in the U.K.) underline the need for international pressure. Over 80,000 workers die of asbestos exposure alone, every year. Last January, China ratified ILO Convention 155 for occupational health and safety, raising hopes that OHS may be getting on track. Yet most other ILO OHS-related Instruments remain ignored, as does the recognition of worker or trade union rights connected to Freedom of Association.

Three weeks ago, the Trade Union Advisory Committee to the OECD (TUAC) brought the Gold Peak case to member states of the OECD Environment Policy Committee (EPOC) as a first step toward approaching member States of other U.N. bodies, as well as large buyers of Gold Peak products, such as Sony, Nikon, Panasonic, Canon and Toshiba that sell the company’s camera batteries.

ITUC and GM have issued a call to the international community to recommend possible courses of action to remedy the crisis and for information about the operations of Gold Peak and its three Chinese subsidiaries - Huizhou Power Pack Company Limited , Huizhou Advance Battery Technology Company and Shenzhen Jetpower Batteries Limited. They have also requested information about the release by these companies of such carcinogenic agents as cadmium, as well as analysis of their likely impacts.

Source: ITUC

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Democratic Republic of Congo


 

Germany embassy to be visited to highlight need for HIV/AIDS action Project workers of the ‘Union National Des Travailleurs’ (UNTC) in the Democratic Republic of Congo will be delivering a letter to the German Embassy in Kinshasa in which they ask the Government of Germany, host of this year’s G8 Summit in June, to support the creation of a high-level working group on HIV-AIDS. In a Campaign circular sent out in late February, Alan Leather, Chair of the Global Unions Campaign has asked union and other organizations to hand deliver a letter to the German Embassy situated in their country by 28 April, the International Commemoration Day (ICD) for Dead and Injured Workers.

Contact: Modeste Ndongala

Source: ITUC

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Colombia


 

Trade Unions in Colombia Join 28 April Seminar
ENS / INSISTA / CUT: The “Escuela Nacional Sindical”, ‘Intersindical De Salud Y Trabajo de Antioquía” (INSISTA) and the “Central Unitaria De Trabajadores - Subdirectiva Antioquia (CUT -Antioquia) are planning various activities for this 28 April, one of which will be a national seminar on 30 April on workplace risks, titled “Work Related Accidents and Decent Work". The seminar will take place at Antioquía University.

The Seminar will involve more 200 union representatives from different regions of the country. It will review the extent of worker fatalities and injuries in the country and consider what steps to take to promote vigilance and prevention.

The 40 miners that died in an explosion last February in the Sardinata region is but a reflection of a widespread problem in Colombia. According to the Social Protection Ministry nearly 870 workers die every year (three per day) from over 590 thousand workplace accidents every year, which translates into over 1 injured worker per minute.

Colombia has ratified ILO Conventions 162 on asbestos (it currently both imports and exports asbestos) and 170 on chemicals as work. It has not however yet rarified ILO Convention 155 on occupational safety or other OHS Instruments.

In addition to the Seminar a special article, “Karoshi: To Die Working”, will provide an analysis of workers who died in 2006.

Contact Carmen Pico M.

Source: ITUC

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Cote D'Ivoire


 

28 Avril Conférence débat et action dans les entreprises sur les accidents et risques professionnels au profit des travailleurs des trois syndicats affiliés à l'IBB/BWI (DIGNITE, FNST TP BACI and SNTIMGB/CI).

L'IBB dit de s'organiser! Syndicats puissants, vies préservées, IBB. plus

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Czech Republic


 

Czech Trade Unions Focus on Cancer for 28 April

CMKOS, the Czech-Moravian Confederation of Trade Unions, 28 April, is to highlight occupational cancer risks on 28 April. Speaking for the Confederation, Miroslav Kosina of the Health and Safety Centre, said that CMKOS would organise a candle-lighting ceremony and a seminar focusing on occupational cancer prevention. The seminar will take place in CMKOS headquarters on 28 April, and will be attended by health and safety experts from the Health and Safety Centre, from CMKOS affiliated unions, as well as from the regions. Representatives of Ministries of Labour and Social Affairs and other institutions involved are also being invited to participate.

Contact Miroslav Kosina

Occupational cancer information resource

Source: ITUC

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Croatia


 

Unions want 28 April officially recognised The Union of Autonomous Trade Unions [UATUC] of Croatia is sending a letter to the Government of the Republic of Croatia asking it to officially declare 28 April as the Day of Occupational Safety and Health in the Republic of Croatia.

According to UATUC’s Dijana Šobota, the idea to seek the government declaration is part of the UATUC occupational safety and health coordinating group’s work programme. A letter to the Croatian prime minister says: “The Day of Occupational Safety and Health would urge the broader public to become more perceptive of workers’ injuries and illnesses at the workplace and of conditions in which those injuries and accidents occur. According to global surveys on occupational injuries 22-23.000 occupational injuries occur per year. Of 800 workers who are seriously injured, 45 to 50 die at their workplace. The surveys have shown that the costs of occupational injuries amount to 2-4 per cent of gross national income.”

The UATUC will host a ceremony to observe ICD 2007 that will begin with an unveiling of a white marble memorial in its Zagreb headquarters, inscribed in gold with: “International Commemoration For Dead And Injured Workers At the Workplace – 28 April Day for Occupational Safety and Health in the Republic of Croatia, April 2007, UATUC”.

This will be followed by a press conference. Representatives of all six representative trade union confederations in Croatia will participate, along with representatives from the relevant Croatian ministry, the Croatian Institute for the Occupational Health, state inspectorate, the National Council for OSH, as well as Annie Rice, Viktor Kempa and Laurent Vogel from the ILO and ETUI-REHS.

Contact: Dijana Šobota

Source: ITUC

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Denmark


 

Unions highlight pesticide hazards The United Federation of Danish Workers (3F) is organising a 28 April event that will centre on hazards faced by union members on farms who use extremely poisonous pesticides. The event will feature speakers from Brazil, as well as the Danish and European parliaments. The meeting will also address Corporate Social Responsibility, including labelling requirements on pesticides and other chemicals produced by the Danish chemical multinational, Cheminova.

Union members dressed in protective clothing will hand out fruit on which pesticides have been used; others without protective clothing will hand out organic fruit and flowers. 3F is Denmark’s largest trade union, organising both skilled and unskilled workers in several sectors including industry, building and construction, transport, cleaning, gardening, agriculture and forestry.

Contact Jesper Lund-Larsen 3F website

Source: ITUC

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Torches will burn in Denmark on 28 April 2007

LO/FTF: The Danish Confederation of Trade Unions (LO), the Confederation of Salaried Employees and Civil Servants in Denmark (FTF) have combined to organize a variety of activities across their country on April 28 International Commemoration Day (ICD).

Instead of lighting the customary candles, however, the two Confederations are asking trade unions to mount torches outside their offices to honour the memory of those workers, Danish and foreign, who are killed every year as a consequence of poor health & safety standards. In addition, they will work with their local unions to observe the Day through other activities across the country, including conferences, meetings and street activities that will focus attention on health and safety at work.

This year, the trade union movement will be emphasizing the principle that a safe and healthy working environment is of vital importance to welfare in Denmark. As such, it has dedicated 28 April 28 2007 to special activities under the motto; "Safe and healthy work for all – Welfare centred on health & safety".

At the same time, it will ask the people of Denmark to focus on global development, as workers’ rights have come under pressure in many parts of the world, which require workers’ solidarity across borders. In particular, the LO and FTF will be promoting the following themes on 28 April:

* Psycho-social and ergonomic hazards at work
* The high rate of industrial accidents among young workers
* Cancer caused by asbestos at the work­place.
* Immigrants’ health & safety at work
* Health & safety standards and enforcement
* Global health & safety at work and Danish development aid

To support of 28 April activities by local trade unions, the two organizations are providing support and resources that include: 28 April posters and logo; wide distribution of posters, flyers and other informative materials; and arrangements for foreign guests from health and safety projects partly funded by the LO/FTF Council to participate in the activities on the Day. Local organisers are invited to find information on materials on the Internet at: www@lo.dk and www@ftf.dk/28april

As well, the two organisations plan to connect the theme of Safe and Healthy Work to May 1st activities sponsored by the Danish trade union movement for which they will issue a press releases and documentation on the negative consequences of a poor working environment.

Further information

Contact (LO) Poul Schoening
Contact [FTF] Signe Kofoed

Source: ITUC / Hazards magazine

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Dominican Republic


 

Federación Nacional de Trabajadores de la Industria de la Construcción, Madera y Materiales de Construcción (FENTICOMMC)
• Concentración en la región este de 8 sindicatos (San Pedro de Macorís).
• Afiches, banners y mantas alusivas al 28 de abril.
• Cuña radial para promover la actividad

La ICM Dice ¡ORGANICEN! Sindicatos fuertes, Salven vidas - 28 de abril, ICM. más

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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El Salvador


 

Sindicato de Obreros de la Industria de la Construcción, Similares y Conexos de El Salvador (SIOCSCES)
• Seminario taller de capacitación en salud laboral
• Afiches, camisetas y banners
• Publicación en Diario Colatino

La ICM Dice ¡ORGANICEN! Sindicatos fuertes, Salven vidas - 28 de abril, ICM. más

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Fiji


 

28 April in Fiji Building Construction and Timber Workers Union (BCTWU) is organising a campaign meeting on employer accountability on occupational safety and health to mark International Workers' Memorial Day.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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French Polynesia


 

Trade unions in French Polynesia demonstrate for health and safety of public sector workers

ATIM: A TUA I MU, the Trade Union Confederation of French Polynesia is planning a major demonstration in front of its country’s Ministry of Public Administration on 27 April, aimed at delivering a message while officials are in the building. They will ask the Government of French Polynesia to pass legislation to protect the health and safety of public sector workers, many of whom belong to affiliated trade unions.

According to General Treasurer Yves Laugrost, the country currently has in place legislation to provide substantial protection to private sector workers. Public sector workers lack any such protection, however, in spite of the fact that the A TUA I MU has been lobbying for five years to have such a law passed. It will now utilize the occasion of 28 April 28th to demonstrate on behalf of these demands.

Trade union Country-by-Country Profiles indicate that the Government of French Polynesia has yet to ratify any of the ILO Conventions in the area of occupational health and safety or of the core labour standards.

Contact Yves LAUGROST

Source: ITUC

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Greece


 

Greek trade unionists observe IWMD with OHS weeting

The Greek General Confederation of Labour (GSEE) will join trade unions around the world in commemorating 28 April International Workers' Memorial Day by organising an event this Friday 27 April.

GSEE President, Giannis Panagopoulos, will be the main speaker at a meeting that is scheduled at the Greek Refinery Headquarters at Aspropyrgos, Attica. Representatives from all sectoral federations of the GSEE are expected to be in attendance to discuss working conditions and to learn more about the meaning of 28 April.

Last year Greece became the 14th country to officially adopt 28 April. The Trade Union Country Profiles show that, while the Government of Greece has ratified all of the ILO Conventions that make up the Core Labour Standards, it has still to adopt Convention 155, Occupational Safety & Health, as well as a number of other key Conventions in this area.

Contact: Christina Theochari

Source: ITUC

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Guatemala


 

Sindicato Nacional de la Construcción y Servicios de Guatemala (SINCS-G)
• Taller en Chimaltenango: “Salud Ocupacional un compromiso tripartito. (20-21 de abril).
• Taller en Quezaltenango: “Promoción del Día Nacional de la Salud Laboral. (26-28 de abril).

La ICM Dice ¡ORGANICEN! Sindicatos fuertes, Salven vidas - 28 de abril, ICM. más

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Guinea


 

28 Avril Journée de souvenir pour les travailleurs morts dans l'exercice de leur métier.

L'IBB dit de s'organiser! Syndicats puissants, vies préservées, IBB. plus

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Hungary


 

Hungarian Trade Unions Organise 28 April Conference MSZOSZ: The National Confederation of Hungarian Trade Unions is planning to mark 28 April Workers' Memorial Day by organizing a major awareness raising conference under the title ”Safe and Healthy Workplaces for All”.

In addition to commemoration activities, the conference will focus on ways and means that trade unions can act to improve the Occupational Health & Safety system in Hungary by working in cooperation with the government and employers.

It is anticipated that the conference will be attended by 150 participants, and will be well publicised through the Hungarian media.

According to the latest Trade Union Country-by-Country Profiles for Occupational Health & Safety, the estimated rate of workplace accident fatalities in Hungary is 10/10,000 workers, with10 worker deaths every year are officially attributed to asbestos exposure, which is the object of a trade union campaign and one of the three themes for 28 April 2007. Hungary has ratified all six Conventions composing the ILO’s Core Labour Standards, as well as Convention 155 Occupational Health & Safety, and a number of other related instruments.

Contact Károly György

Source: ITUC

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Hungarian unions organise memorial and focus on workplace stress MOSZ: On 28 April 2007, as in past years, the National Federation of Workers' Councils in Hungary (MOSZ) will commemorate workers killed or injured at the workplace by placing wreathes in a memorial in Pécs, the third biggest city in Hungary. This will be followed by a Commemoration meeting with guests invited from all sectors of Hungarian society.

28 April activities will also include a conference in Budapest dedicated to the theme of workplace stress, reflecting negotiations that are currently taking place on the subject between employers and employees in the National Interest Reconciliation Council. These negotiations are guided by the Hungarian legal system, which requires adaptation and implementation within a framework agreement between the social partners in the context of the European Union.

According to field studies, more than 50 per cent of Hungarian employees work in highly stressful environments and trade unionists are concerned that human resource strategies for dealing with workers have become extremely uncaring and callous. This trend must be reversed, and the 28 April conference and negotiations are aimed at changing the situation.

Contact mosz@munkastanacsok.hu

Source: ITUC

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Hong Kong


 

IHLO activities for 28 April The Hong Kong Liaison Office of the international trade union movement reports on Hong Kong 28 April activities.

The excellent an regulalry updated IHLO website features background information, events listsings and a statement on 28 April calling for a comprehensive set of demands to make work more safe and healthy.

StatementBackgroundEventsA call for support

Further updated information from IHLO

Contact Levina Sung, IHLO

Source:IHLO / Hazards magazine

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Hong Kong Exhibition & Rallies Mark 28 April

The Hong Kong Confederation of Trade Unions is working closely with the Hong Kong Association for the Rights of Industrial Accident Victims (ARIAV) to organise a full day events for 28 April International Workers' Memorial Day in collaboration with Justice and Peace, the Hong Kong Liaison Office and the Asia Monitor Resource Centre (AMRC).

A morning rally organised by ARIAV will focus on victims of industrial accident victims and will involve their families and widows. Every year some 60,000 occupational accidents occur in Hong Kong with more than 200 deaths from occupational illness or accidents.

Another rally in the afternoon will feature speeches and presentations, and will be followed by a march to the major distributing outlets of batteries produced in China for Gold Peak (Holdings) of Hong Kong, and are associated to the poisoning of workers there by cadmium. [pdf].

The events will also highlight the return of three Chinese ex- gem workers, now disabled with silicosis, after their recent tour to the internationally renowned jewellery BASELWORLD exhibition in Switzerland followed by meetings with the ILO and WHO in Geneva. The delegation raised concerns about how gems from Chinese factories are the cause of silicosis in thousands of workers. [pdf]

Throughout 28 April, an Art Exhibition will feature exhibits completed by the children of dead workers.

Further updated information from IHLO

Contact Levina Sung, IHLO

Contact Dominique Muller

Source: ITUC / IHLO / Hazards magazine

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India


Women’s Ceremony for Children of Worker Victims in India The society for working life (SWL) has organised a meeting of women in New Delhi, India on 28 April to host a special candle ceremony with children of worker victims ’. Another commemoration ceremony was also organised in the Madhubani District of Bihar (the State near Nepal border) with local trade unions. The SWL is involved in the ‘Women, Work & Health Initiative’ and works with NGO’s in Bihar to build awareness about HIV/AIDS among families of migrant workers.

Contact Sunita Kaistha

Source: ITUC

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Indian National Rural Labour Federation INRLF is planning a week long series of activities for International Workers' Memorial Day.

Week-long activities include:

• Asbestos
• Workers Safety
• Implementation of Safety Rules at Worksites
• Union district committees to conduct meetings in labour populated areas to raise awareness on above-mentioned issues.
• Leaflets on Asbestos awareness, banners on Work Safety and Poster asking governments to implement Safety at Work.
• During the week – Union is arranging to have a seminar on Cancer and Asbestos inviting Doctors, Goverment Agencies and General Public at Chennai.
• Submission of memorandum to State Government on Asbestos ban with approximately 100,000 Signatures. We have sent letters requesting for appointments with State Chief Minister, State Minister heading Labour, Health, Industries and Local Administration.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Tamil Nadu Construction and Unorganized Workers Federation (TCWF)

To highlight the occuaptional health and safety issues the Federation has invited the State Labour Minister for their inaugural meeting on 28/29 April 2007.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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ERCCMU Eastern Railway Construction and Contractor Mazdoor Union is organising a set of 28 April activities.

A public meeting to raise awareness raising on health and safety at construction sites / promote preventive measures will be held. An interactive session with the press / media will be held in the evening. The Ban Asbestos Campaign is sending a letter to Governor and Mayor.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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KKNTC Kerala Kettida Nirmana Thozhilali Congress is organising a march to mark International Workers' Memorial Day.

The large workers procession from all Districts of Kerala will converge at Cochin - KKNTC members will be carrying banners, placards, candles etc. The highlight of the campaign will be participation of accident victims.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Indonesia


 

BWI Regional caucus on asbestos The caucus of UECI, ALU, INRLF, F-KUI aims to follow up on the 2006 ILO resolution on asbestos. It will also examine how best to engage the national offices of the World Health Organisation along this line. This caucus will also discuss necessary preparations for the scheduled Regional Conference on Asbestos in Indonesia in September 2007.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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28 April activities K FUI is organising a conference workshop on Public Contracts and Ban on Asbestos. The conference will re-iterate its call on the Ministry of Public Works to prohibit the use of asbestos materials on all government-funded infrastructure projects as well as the ban of asbestos in Indonesia.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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International


ICEM's 28 April Priority: Lobby G8 Summit for Creation of High-Level Working Group on HIV/AIDS

For Workers’ Memorial Day 2007, the ICEM has adopted a campaign encouraging affiliates to sign on to the global trade union lobby for a high-level G8 Working Group on HIV/AIDS as a major part of its comprehensive programme to combat the global pandemic.

The ICEM has urged its affiliates to send letters to the German embassy, or a German consulate in their home countries, requesting creation of such a high-level commission. Germany is host to the G8 Summit this year.

The ICEM strongly believes that such a Working Group is needed to guarantee there is progress on prior G8 commitments to achieve universal access to HIV/AIDS drugs, treatments, and care by 2010, and to escalate development of a vaccine to prevent HIV infection. ICEM believes that a more sustained political commitment and commitment of resources by the world's richest nations must occur to reverse this deadly pandemic plaguing workers in the developing world.

The letter for creation of such a high-level Working Group states: "The UN Declaration of Commitment on HIV/AIDS, signed by the G8 and other countries, promised a dedicated focus on HIV/AIDS. In so doing, countries agreed to time-bound commitments for ensuing progress to address the most serious global health threat known to our civilization.

"We therefore call upon the government of Germany, as the host of the next G8, to support our call for the fulfilment of these and other G8 commitments on HIV/AIDS. We are not suggesting that a new bureaucracy by created, but that a Working Group of experts of the G8 be set-up and that it be supported by the technical support of existing bodies such as UNAIDS and its co-sponsors."

The ICEM has launched several HIV/AIDS projects in recent years to address the negative work aspects of the pandemic. ICEM also sponsors projects to provide training for national coordinators in Africa so they can educate workers on HIV/AIDS and the necessity of testing. Such projects will in the future be extended to Latin America and Asia.

ICEM in brief

Source: Hazards magazine / ICEM

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ICEM Demonstrations set to get government to halt asbestos mining and exports

Canada, as one of the biggest suppliers of asbestos, will be the target of protests on 28 April at the country's embassy in Washington, D.C., and at the Canadian High Commission in London. Organised by the London-based International Ban Asbestos Secretariat, the protest calls on the Canadian government to live up to its progressive global reputation by banning the mining and export of asbestos.

Canadian labour groups and activists are also using 28 April as a day to call on the government to halt asbestos production and export. They will issue a separate document on the issue.

Estimates are that one national asbestos-related death occurs for each 170 tonnes produced. In 126 years of asbestos mining, dating back to 1880, Canada has produced in excess of 65 million tonnes of asbestos.

The theme for this year's 28 April National Day of Mourning, as proclaimed by the Canadian Labour Congress (CLC), is "Safe and Healthy Workplaces for All Workers." The CLC calls on trade union bodies to demand that governments enforce existing laws by providing the necessary tools and resources. "Lives are not saved by governments simply adopting legislation," states the CLC. "Lives are saved by governments enforcing legislation."

Source: Hazards magazine / ICEM

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ITGLWF ITGLWF affiliates who attended the Occupational Health and Safety workshop held in Johannesburg South Africa on 16- 18 April 2007,for a three days to plan, asses and evaluate the situation on Occupational Health and Safety conditions in Textile and Garment Sectors in the Southern Region of Africa. have published a statement produced in full below:

"Having noted that productivity and efficiency are essential for Economic Growth in our Countries and Companies and that to achieve this, Occupational Health and Safety is of paramount importance at all levels.

"Join the rest of the world in commemorating the Health Safety Day on the 28 April 2007, against the bag drop of ever escalating accidents and occupational diseases, statistics which World wide still stand at around 270million.

"Further more we would like to maintain that;
• A health worker is a productive worker.
• A Safe working Environment protects workers and is less costly.
• Employers should work towards eliminating and controlling Hazards at source.
• Promote periodic medical checkups.
• Respect workers Occupational Health and Safety rights.
• Involve workers in all issues pertaining to Occupational Health and Safety and their conditions of work.
• Companies must take full responsibility on all Occupational Health and Safety expenses and development of a safe working place.
• Employers should recognise the existence of OHS committees, shop stewards and the trade Union in their workplaces.

"We call upon all countries within the SADC region, those who have not ratified the ILO convention 155 of 1981 on OHS, to immediately ratify the ILO convention 155 of 1981 on OHS, amend relevant national laws to be in line with the convention as well as the enforcement of such laws

"We call upon Health Ministers and Labour Ministers to take a lead in this campaign and support the World Health Organisation on Global plan on Worker’s Health

"We commit ourselves to commit, celebrate the International OHS day by calling upon our governments and employers to respect and adhere to the principles of the ILO convention No.155 of 1981."

Contact: Silvana Cappuccio

EFAIDS Programme

Source: Hazards magazine / ITGLWF

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EI Joins 28 April Campaign for G8 HIV-AIDS Working Group

Education International (EI) is joining the international 28 April campaign on HIV/AIDS by asking its affiliates to join trade unionist around the world who will be visiting German Embassies with a message asking the Government of Germany, host of this year’s G8 Summit, to support the creation of a high-level working group on HIV/AIDS.

The EI Campaign Unit will ask all national EFAIDS Programme Coordinators to deliver the letter to German Embassies in their respective countries. It will also suggest that they organise an activity or event to publicise this action.

The EFAIDS Programme was launched in January 2006 as a joint initiative of the EI, the WHO (World Health Organisation) and the EDC (Education Development Center). It supports efforts of teachers’ unions committed to HIV/AIDS prevention in schools by advocating for Education For All (EFA) at the national level.

The participation of EI boosts the HIV/AIDS Campaign relaunched by the Global Unions HIV/AIDS Committee in December 2006. The intent is to convince Heads of State attending next June’s G8 Summit in Germany to create a Working Group on HIV/AIDS, which is considered a critical step towards fulfilling an earlier promise by G8 countries to provide universal access to treatment by 2010.

Contact: Laura Sullivan

EFAIDS Programme

Source: ITUC

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The BWI says organise! Strong unions save lives Each year on the 28th April trade unions around the world organise events to celebrate International Workers Memorial Day. The purpose is to highlight the preventable nature of workplace accidents and ill health, and to promote campaigns and union organisation to improve health and safety at work. It is also a day to remember all those who have died because of their job.

BWI 28 April webpages

Source: BWI

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BWI want action to ban asbestos The Building Workers International is asking all trade unions to send a letter to their national governments, asking for a meeting to discuss a national action plan to prevent asbestos related diseases. BWI is also appealing for a renewed international effort to convince the Canadian government to recognise that asbestos is the world’s biggest industrial killer and that it should be banned in all countries. A number of building trades unions have already communicated their intention to hold peaceful demonstrations outside Canadian Embassies for 28 April 28, International Workers Memorial Day. More

Source: BWI

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Japan


 

JTUC-RENGO Links 28 April to May Day The Japanese Trade Union Confederation is planning 28 April activities in conjunction with its 2007 May Day rallies. While a number of rallies will be taking place across Japan, a central rally assembling 40,000 union members will be organised on May Day in Tokyo. A special booth will be set up calling for “Safe & Healthy Work For All” and will highlight work-related accidents and disease prevention. It will also signal the importance of observing the Occupational safety and Health Act of Japan.

Speeches will be delivered by a JTUC-RENGO and ILO spokespersons about the International Commemoration Day and injured workers. The NGO-Trade Union for International Collaboration on MDGs will also set up an exhibit on May Day, highlighting child labour, HIV/AIDS and the need medical care for expectant women and nursing mothers.

Contact JTUC-RENGO

Source: ITUC

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Kenya


 

Asbestos awareness drive in Nairobi Unions KBCTF and AEI, KQMWU and Kenya printing union will be running awareness drive on the dangers of asbestos at five Nairobi construction sites.

Employers of five sites visited will be presented with a letter highlighting union concerns on asbestos.

A 28 April memorial tree will also be planted.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Lithuania


 

Conferences and meeting to Mark 28 April in Lithuania The Lithuanian Trade Union Confederation will carry on a tradition of lighting a commemoration candles in its headquarters, as well as encouraging trade unions across the country to do the same in their offices as well as taking part in events commemorating April 28 in their regions.

Three national trade union organizations – LTU Confederation, LTU Solidarumas and the Lithuanian Workers' Federation - will participate in a Round Table discussion scheduled to take place in the country’s Parliament during 28 April Day by the Government’s Committee of Social Affairs and Labour. The theme of the discussion will be "Health and Safety at Workplaces: How to Guarantee Efficient Implementation Measures".

Union leaders will meet with representatives of the State Labour Inspectorate, the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour, a delegation from the European Community, as well as some of their own MPs, to discuss the health and safety situation in Lithuania, including legislation which has just been passed.

According the Lithuanian State Labour Inspection Unit, one-third of all fatal accidents in Lithuania workplaces occur in the building sector; in fact, the fatality rate is three times higher than the average for the European Union. Other notably dangerous sectors are transport, building, wood processing, chemical industry. One-half of all fatal accidents occurred because of work that is badly-organised and managed. New employees (working for less than one year) experience bear the brunt of the injuries, with a rate that is five times higher than that for experienced workers.

Contact Giedre Lelyte

Source: ITUC

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Luxembourg


 

Luxembourg unions focus on cancer prevention for 28 April

OGB-L (Onofhängege Gewerkschaftsbond Lëtzeburg/Confédération Syndicale Indépendent du Luxembourg) is the leading trade union confederation in Luxembourg will mark Workers’ Memorial Day with a conference on workplace carcinogens, with the aim of improving occupational cancer prevention. The conference, part of a global union drive to prevent occupational cancers, will take place on 25 April.

New global union estimates put the proportion of cancer deaths caused by work at 8-16 per cent, or between about half a million and 1 million cancer deaths in the working age and above population each year. Prevention of occupational and environmental cancers is one of the key themes for Workers’ Memorial Day 2007.

Contact Alain Kinn

Information about the conference will be available on the OG-BL website at: http://www.ogb-l.lu

OGB-L 28 April event summary [pdf]

Source: Hazards/OGB-L

Hazards cancer prevention kit

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Intitulé: Conférence-débat dans le cadre de la Journée internationale de commémoration des travailleurs morts et blessés au travail (28 avril)

Dates et heures le mercredi 25 avril à partir de 16h30
Lieuà la salle des fêtes de la Maison du Peuple à Esch/Alzette
Orateur organisée par l'OGBL avec le soutien du STM (Service de Santé au Travail Multisectoriel)
Description Thèmes

Les agents cancérigènes

La prévention du risque professionnel: le rôle du médecin du travail Document: 28 avril 2007 [pdf]

Source: Hazards/OGB-L

Hazards cancer prevention kit

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Malawi


 

Asbestos awareness campaign On 28 April onstruction union BCCEAWU will raise wareness of the dangers of asbestos dust, focusing on the health effects.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Malaysia


 

28 April in Malaysia There will be tripartite observance of International Workers' Memorial Day in Putraja to be attended by 1,000 delegates. At the same time, the Malaysian Trade Union Congress will also hold its annual commemoration in which the construction General Union Federation BWI affiliates - the TEU, MTSU, UFES - will be participating. In the evening, UECI (Union of Employees in Construction Industry) will hold its own annual commemoration for construction workers that will be concluded by traditional lighting of candles to mourn for the dead and fight for the living.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Solemn Ceremonies for IWMD in Malaysia The Malaysian Trades Union Congress will observe International Workers' Memorial Day by holding a special session at its Wisma MTUC headquarters.

Entitled ‘Safe and Healthy Workplaces: Making Decent Work a Reality’, the event will begin with an address by MTUC Secretary General G. Rajasekaran. The MTUC OHS Pledge will then be read and delegates will sing ‘Ingat pada yang kasih’, after which Brother Syed Shair, MTUC President, will light the ceremonial Candle.

A number of true stories will be told by victims of unhealthy, unsafe and unsustainable workplaces, followed by a panel discussion on Stress at the Workplace, in which trade unionists will trade views with experts on the subject. Lunch will be served and a Press Conference scheduled for the conclusion to inform the public about the significance of IWMD.

In addition, the MTUC Penang District Division is planning to hold its own IWMD event at the Penang Bridge in order to commemorate the workers who died during the construction of the bridge. About 150 participants are expected to be take part in this event which will be officiated by the Penang Chief Minister.

Statistics compiled by the MTUC reveal that in the period between 1994 and 2004, 10,551 persons have been killed in work-related incidents, and a further 115,085 workers have been disabled.

More information on the MTUC and its plans for 28 April are available at the its website at www.mtuc.org.my

Contact: Prema Arasan

Source: ITUC

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Malta


 

Maltese Trade Unions Plan Full Schedule of Events for 28 April

The General Workers' Union of Malta will continue a strong tradition for 28 April International Day of Commemoration (ICD) by planning a full range of activities and symbolic gestures.

Plans are being made to visit the Minister of Education, Youth and Employment to request that ministerial buildings fly their flags at half mast, just as they did last year. In addition, editors of the Union's newspapers will be asked to dedicate their editorial to the observation of the Day.

The Day itself will begin with a meeting of the Island’s two Archbishops at which they will be implored to say prayers for workers who have died. It will also include a meeting with the two main political parties in Malta, to press for increased protection for Malta’s workers.

In addition, the Union will lay a wreath of flowers at the workers monument, and then ask all employees in the building of the Union to stop work for one minute and the Union’s flags will be flown at half-mast

According to GWU President Saviour Sammut, his Union is guided by the belief that with these events, they will be honouring the sacrifice made by their comrades who have lost their lives at their place of work.

According to Trade Union Country-by-Country Profiles, while the Government of Malta has ratified all of the ILO Conventions that make up the ILO Core Labour Standards, it has yet to adopt ILO Conventions 155 Occupational Safety & Health, 139 Occupational Cancer, 162 Asbestos at Work, or 170 Chemicals at Work, amongst others.

Contact Salv Sammut

Source: ITUC

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Mauritius


 

CFMEU Construction union CFMEU's 28 April activities involve spreading awareness of the impact of asbestos, illnesses, targeting construction workers & families, retired workers.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Mauritius unions tackle work related injuries The Mauritius Trade Union Congress (MTUC) tomorrow 28 April will host a special “Reflection Day” to pay tribute to workers who have been injured, killed or become ill due to their work.

About 200 union representatives will attend the event that will be held at the Unity House, Beau Bassin. Media have been invited.

Maritius has yet to ratify any of the ILO OHS Conventions, despite being among the worst offenders of worker injury rates in the world at 18 per 100 thousand workers.

Source: ITUC

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Morocco


 

Ceremony in Morocco by Arab-Muslim women’s network The women’s network ‘Femmes et Développement Durable’ lit a 28 April commemoration candle in Rabat, Morocco to highlight the trade union violations in countries without protective legislation and to prey for worker victims who have died or continue to suffer.

The network communicated its alarm at fetal deformities due to cancer in women because of workplace and environmental contamination. They called on all politicians to pay more attention to occupational, health and safety and for trade unions in Arab-Muslim countries to become more involved in workplace safety issues. They appealed to women workers throughout the world to stand in solidarity against violations of worker rights and with women in areas of conflict to promote peace.

The network aims to connect with women workers throughout the world as a means of promoting sustainable development and worker’s occupational safety. It has evolved with women in Arab Muslim countries and its membership extends to: Algeria, Bahrain, Djibouti, Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Kenya, Mauritania, Morocco, Kuwait, Tunisia, Mauritania, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Malaysia, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syrian Arab Republic, Sudan, Somalia, United Arab Emirates, Djibouti, Sudan. In 2008 the network plans to address the ISESCO 3rd Islamic Congress of Environment Ministers.

Contact Kena El Ghali

Source: ITUC

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Nepal


 

CUPPEC, CAWUN and NBCWU Three Nepalese unions have organised a consensus building meeting with employers federation FCAN. the meeting will focus on the final draft agreement on occupational health and safety to be signed with the Federation of Contractors Association of Nepal (FCAN).

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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CUPPEC, CAWUN and NBCWU Three Nepalese unions have organised a consensus building meeting with employers federation FCAN. the meeting will focus on the final draft agreement on occupational health and safety to be signed with the Federation of Contractors Association of Nepal (FCAN).

Nepal Building and Construction Workers, affiliated to the Building and Woodworkers International (BWI), will be organizing its own demonstration in front of the Brick Kline building to raise awareness of safety and health issues there. There are 300 Brick Kline workers in Kathmandu, and around 1500 throughout the whole country.

According to Trade Union Country Profiles, the rate of fatal accidents in Nepal is 30/100,000 workers, one of the highest in the world.

Last year at this time the international trade union movement welcomed new signs of a return to democracy in Nepal, following the climb down by King Gyanendra in the face of several days of strike action and massive protests, involving tens of thousands of people. Following the King's seizure of power in February 2005, the country's main trade union organisations (DECONT, GEFONT and NTUC) were at the centre of a broad civil society alliance which forced the King to agree to the reinstatement of parliament.

Contact Laxman Basnet

Source: ITUC

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Netherlands


 

FNV The’ Federatie Nederlandese Vakbeweging’ has joined in the 28 April Campaign to convince the German Presidency of the 2007 G8 Summit to support the call by Global Unions for a high-level working group on HIV/AIDS.

In a letter delivered to the Ambassador for the Republic of Germany in the Hague, Agnes Jongerius, FNV President, conveyed “an urgent message on the occasion of 28th April to urge your government to support the creation of a G-8 high-level Working Group on HIV/AIDS.”

“We firmly believe such a Working Group is needed to guarantee progress on commitments made by governments at previous G-8 Summits, when promises were made to achieve Universal Access to treatment and care by 2010, and to further the development of a vaccine to prevent HIV infection,” Jongerius said.

Contact Wilma Roos

Source: ITUC

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New Zealand


 

Workers' Memorial Day 2007: New Zealand Events are taking place around New Zealand to mark Workers Memorial Day on April 28.

On this day we come together to remember those who have been killed or injured at work, and to fight for the health and safety of the living.

Under the theme "Decent work is safe work" Unions will be focusing on education and organising around health and safety. We will also be demanding accountability from employers who refuse to meet their obligations to provide a healthy and safe workplace.

Unions Talking Health and Safety Campaign
Get the latest on health and safety on www.worksafereps.org.nz

New Zealand Events for 28th April

Auckland
Saturday 28th April
6.30 pm
May Day dinner for all union people. For bookings contact Gary Parsloe at MUNZ 021 326 261 or Linda Holt at PSA 027 271 3572

Mount Manganui/Tauranga
Saturday 28th April 11.30am Seafarer centre, 114 Hull road Mount Maungaui. A karakia, followed by the Mayor of Tauranga speech and unveiling of the plaque, followed by one minute silence. This is a Joint Project being organised by RMTU and MUNZ. Contact Kelvin Rush

Wellington
Saturday 28th April
Details to be confirmed. Contact Pat Bolster Saturday

Christchurch
Saturday 28th April
12pm
Rally at Science Alive Reserve, Behind Hoyts 8 Theatre, Moorhouse Avenue Speakers - The Hon Ruth Dyson
Contact Karena.brown@epmu.org.nz

Dunedin
Saturday 28th April
11.30 am
Otago Workers Memorial Market Reserve – Princes Street Dunedin. To be followed by a function at the Masonic Lodge in Manor Place. Contact jennym@nzno.org.nz

Dont see your event here?
Email the CTU to register your event.

International Events and Resources
Details of international events, briefings and resources for workers memorial day

About Contributor
Name Renee Habluetzel
Phone 04 385 1334 ext 824
Email reneeh@nzctu.org.nz

Source: Hazards magazine

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Niger


 

28 Avril Conférence public sur les accidents et risques professionnels. Sensibilisation de l'opinion national sur la sécurité au travail.

L'IBB dit de s'organiser! Syndicats puissants, vies préservées, IBB. plus

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Nigeria


 

Nigerian Unions plan debate with government The Nigeria Labour Congress NLCwill mark 28 April International Workers' Memorial Day (IWMD) with a Television Talk Show centered on the theme Making the decent work a reality in Nigeria.

The show will feature the Nigerian Minister of Labour in discussion with the Deputy General Secretary of Nigeria Labour Congress. It was conceived through consultation with groups participating in 28 April activities that included the Federal Ministry of Labour, the Nigeria Labour Congress, Health and the Safety Professionals and the Industrial Safety Council in Nigeria.

Some other activities planned for the Day, such as rallies and mock hazards to determine the response of workers and occupational health and safety departments, were cancelled at the last minute due to the political situation in Nigeria. There was concern amongst some that these rallies could be taken exploited by aggrieved politicians and their agents.

The NLC has also delivered a letter to the GERMAN EMBASSY in Nigeria requesting the support of their government for a high level working group on HIV/AIDS when it hosts the G8 Summit in June. The letter, which was signed by General Secretary John Ejoha Odah of the Nigerian Labour Congress, has been placed on the NLC website and copied to the Fedrich Erbert Stifitung Foundation in Nigeria. It begins by saying:

“I wish to respectfully request your Government to support the creation of G8 high-level Working Group on HIV/AIDS. We have resolved to take advantage of the April 28th-‘International Commemoration for Dead and Injured Workers’ to make this request from friendly governments in Nigeria.”

Contact Maureen Onyia

Source: ITUC

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Activities in Nigeria Trade unions CESSA/NUCE and CFWW are campaigning ban the use of asbestos in the construction sites of Julius Berger and its sub contractors. There will be an action at the head office of Julius Berger- a large construction multinational corporation in construction employing over 2000 workers in Nigeria.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Pakistan


 

28 April seminar promotes rights of women in Pakistan The Pakistan Labour Federation has held a successful one-day national seminar on 'Trade
union mechanism to promote gender equality and development of women' in the lead-up to 28 April International Workers' Memorial Day.

According to PLF Secretary General Haji Muhammad Saeed, the Seminar attracted representation from all over Pakistan including 40 women. It was organized in Lahore in collaboration with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and World Asian Workers Organisation (WAWO), and included a number of Ministers from the Government of Pakistan, as well as trade unionists, embassy officials and other guests from the Arab Republic of Egypt and other countries.

In the Inauguration Ceremony, Mr Muhammed Ishaq Khan Khakwani, State Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication reminded trade unions of the role they had to play in working for security and peace in a globalizing world. He was joined by a number of representatives from international organizations in calling on unions to recruit women workers into their organizations, and to defend their legitimate rights and interests by promoting gender equality and women’s development.

Other speakers from the Government of Pakistan and women’s groups noted efforts to promote gender equality and women’s development as a necessary part of working to improve their economic system through the active participation of women. It was noted that women’s rights were being ignored, even though they composed half of the population, particularly in the rural areas where they were compelled to often work more than 15 hours a day, with no right to form a trade union.

Mrs Nadra Shahzad, Union Secretary, said that women’s participation in trade unions is on the increase but is still very low, and is the great challenge ahead for the PLF. She repeated the slogan, 'Unions for women: Womne for unions' adding the slogan, 'Strong women: strong unions.'

Contact Haji Muhammad Saeed

Source: PLF/ITUC

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Pakistan Labour Federation PLF has announced it will hold a national seminar on occupational safety and health next 28th April in Lahore Pakistan. Details will follow. Contact PLF Secretary General Haji Muhammad Saeed hmsaeed@yahoo.com

Source: PLF/ITUC

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Unions calls for action on HIV/AIDS The Pakistan Labour Federation (PLF) has delivered a letter to the German Embassy in the city of Islamabad, in which they ask the German government, host of this year’s G8 Summit, to support the creation of a high-level working group on HIV/AIDS. In his report to 28 April coordinators, PLF secretary general Haji Muhammad Saeed also asked all those organising 28 April activities to remember migrant workers, many from Pakistan, who died recently in a immigration detention centre in Yeosu, South Korea.

Contact: Haji Muhammad Saeed

Source: PLF/ITUC

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Panama


 

Sindicato Único Nacional de Trabajadores de la Industria de la Construcción y Similares (SUNTRACS)
• Afiches distribuidos en cada una de las obras.
•Taller de capacitación a responsables de los comités de salud laboral.
• Foro, conferencia de prensa en la semana del 23 al 28 de abril.

La ICM Dice ¡ORGANICEN! Sindicatos fuertes, Salven vidas - 28 de abril, ICM. más

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Palestine


 

PGFTU On the 28th of April a big celebration will take place in the PGFTU's headquarter in Nablus - Palestine for the memory of the dead and injured workers at workplaces, in which the General Secretary Shaher Saed will deliver a speech. Also attending will be the labour minister and a representatve of the Palestine president Mahmoud Abbas.

On the 29th of April, PGFTU will be holding a protest at the Israeli army run Huwarra check point. This demonstration will gather a big number of unionists, workers and union leaders.

Further information from PGFTU

Contact: Issam Wahba

Source: Hazards

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Peru


 

Peruvian IWMD Activities Make OHS a Focus A national seminar will be organized on occupational health and safety and planning will take place to prepare for follow up to the 2005 ‘Seminario Regional Andino de Salud Laboral y Medio Ambiente’ that was responsible for the decision of the Andean Community member States to formally recognise 28 April Street banners announcing the day will be erected in the capital and a wide-range of materials will be produced for massive distribution through government Ministries, media outlets, workplace health and safety committees, transportation outlets and other locations. There are additional plans to organise workplace inspection activities throughout 2007.

On 27-28 April a national “Make Decent Work A Reality” convention will take place as the World Health & Safety Day in Lima Peru. The day is primarily aimed at professionals and occupational health specialists of different fields. Members of workplace health and safety committees are among the target audience for the convention. The President of the Republic and the ILO, along with representatives from the Ministries of Labour, Energy and Mines, Transportation and Communications are scheduled to speak, as well as from occupational health and safety organisation.

In addition an exhibition of health and safety equipment will be organised, bringing together equipment suppliers and emergency services personnel from throughout Peru.

Contact Carlos Ortiz Cornejo (ILA)

Source: Hazards

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San Marino


 

Unions to run 28 April awareness campaign The Labour Confederation of the Republic of San Marino (CSLD) will raising awareness of workplace health and safety issues on 28 April. It will be the first year San Marino unions have joined the global Workers’ Memorial Day activities. According to CSLD general secretary Giovanni Ghiotti, the confederation is preparing public presentations intended to make citizens of San Marino more aware of the serious problem of accidents and deaths in the workplace, and of the need to ensure that workplaces provide the highest standards of security and respect for health.

Contact Lucy Santolini

Source: ITUC

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Scotland


 

STUC 28 April call Trade unions in the Scotland are calling on MPs and employers to formally commemorate the two million people killed globally each year as a result of work.

Despite April 28 having been designated International Workers Memorial Day by trade unions worldwide since 1990, the Scottish Executive and UK Government have failed to mark the day.

Now the STUC is urging the new Scottish Executive and Scottish Parliament to take the initiative and take immediate steps formally recognise International Workers Memorial Day after the elections next week.

Grahame Smith, General Secretary of the Scottish TUC, said: "On April 28 we're remembering the dead and fighting for the living. We think the best way to do this is by campaigning for stricter enforcement with higher penalties for breaches in health and safety laws."

“We welcome the moves by Glasgow City Council, North Lanarkshire and South Lanarkshire Councils and others to work with the trade union movement to establish permanent memorials in their local authorities”.

“This year has seen a tremendous and very welcome increase in the number of events taking place throughout Scotland but we have to move towards the 28 April being a national day of mourning and Scotland can take the lead on this important issue”

Health and Safety Executive figures show that last year 220 people died of injuries sustained at work whilst almost 1,900 died of asbestos cancer mesothelioma and 6,000 from all occupational cancers.

Estimates by other authorities put the figures much higher - 50,000 deaths for illnesses caused or exacerbated by work - while the HSE statistics omit the largest cause of work-related deaths: road traffic accidents which involve people driving as part of their work.

Grahame Smith said: "Whatever the true figures, the fact is that work has a major effect on public health, injury and death, and a great deal more needs to be done to prevent this.

"The costs of work-related ill-health, injury and death are borne by the individuals, their families and the state and not by the employers who caused the problems."

For further information contact
Ian Tasker 07974 966 227

Note for Editors

Events taking place in Scotland to mark International Workers Memorial Day

Trade Union Council Events

Friday 27th April

Fife Commemoration, Workers Memorial Tree, Beveridge Memorial Park Kirkcaldy 11.00 am
Reception at Adam Smith Centre 12.00 noon

Saturday 28th April

Aberdeen 10.00 am coach leaves Marischal College for Persley Memorial Gardens for commemoration.
11.00 am Coach departs for Rubislaw gardens

11.30 am March towards Union Street gathering at Castlegate for speeches

Clydebank Gathering at Solidarity Plaza, Dumbarton Road (Opposite Clydebank Town Hall) at 12.00 noon

Dumfries Assemble 12.00 noon at the Burns Statue (High Street, Dumfries)

Dundee Commemoration Workers Memorial Tree Riverside Drive adjacent to Discovery Point

Kilmarnock Dean Castle Country Park, Kilmarnock (Meet at Dower House)10.30 am. Tree planting ceremony.

Edinburgh Commemoration Workers memorial and garden West Princes Street Gardens Edinburgh (Near Ross Band Stand) 12.00 noon to 12.45pm

Glasgow Commemoration Burns Memorial George Square Glasgow 1.00 pm

Paisley Commemoration Memorial plaque Abbey Grounds Paisley 12.00 noon

West Lothian International Workers Memorial Day Health and Safety Seminar Bathgate Sports Centre, Bathgate, West Lothian 10.00 am

Commemoration 12.30 pm

Other Events
Saturday 28th April

Clydebank Asbestos Group—Workers Memorial Day Conference— OCCUPATIONAL CANCER: the fight for worker’s rights—Clydebank Town Hall (Lesser Hall) 10.30 am—12.00 noon

Contact Ian Tasker

Source: Hazards magazine / TUC

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Senegal


 

28 Avril Séminaire d'une journée sur la santé et la sécurité au travail au profit des quatres syndicats affiliés à l'IBB (SYNACO, SNTBBTPP, SNTBC et SNTC/CNTC).

L'IBB dit de s'organiser! Syndicats puissants, vies préservées, IBB. plus

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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20 Sénégal Unions Join German Embassy Action SLTS: The “Intersyndicale Sécurité Santé au Travail”, which is a coalition that bringing together over 20 unions in Sénégal has announced it will coordinate the delivery of a Global Union letter to the German Embassy in the capital of their county , Dakar.

Contact Ousman Diop

UNSAS/SATS: In addition the ‘Union Nationale des Syndicats Autonomes Sénégal’ and ‘Syndicat Autonome Des Travailleurs De la SDE’ have also agreed to organise their own delivery of a special communication.

Contact Elimane Diouf or Hady

Source: ITUC

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Sierra Leone


 

Sierra Leone Coalition Delivers G8 Letter to German Embassy YPPD: The Youth Partnership for Development Sierra Leone has taken responsibility for delivering a letter to its German Embassy, which asks the Government of Germany to support the creation of a high-level G8 working group on HIV/AIDS, when it hosts the G8 Summit this June.

According to Coordinator Musa Ansumana Soko, the YPPD was one of a number of organizations in that country to take part in the concerted effort on 9th April 2007, which resulted in the G8 letter being delivered to various embassies in Sierra Leone. He reports that he personally gave it to the German embassy.

The Youth Partnership for Development Sierra Leone is a non-governmental youth-led organization that was founded in August 2005 by young people who came together out of a common desire to serve as agents of change and to build capacity in their respective communities for the promotion of advocacy and youth engagement in nation building.

According to the Trade Union Country-by-Country profiles on the Environment, Energy and HIV/AIDS, 7 per cent of the population of Sierra Leon is infected by HIV/AIDS. While that country has ratified all of the Conventions making up the ILO’s Core Labour Standards, it has yet to ratify most of the Conventions relating to workplace safety and health.

Contact Musa Ansumana Soko

Source: ITUC

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Slovak Republic


 

28 April activities in the Slovak Republic Confederation of Trade Unions of the Slovak Republic is organising the official Memorial Tripartite meeting on April 27. The official representatives of Government of the Slovak Republic, employers´ organisations and trade unions will take part.

The venue of this ceremony is a little town Novaky, where in March of this year a work related disaster occured – eight people (civilian workers including 3 women) died in a factory for deactivation of old military munition.

The Safety and Health department of Confederation of TU of Slovak Republic prepared a Leaflet for World Day for Safety and Health at Work. This leaflet was sent to all trade union organisations at both branch and local level. All trade unionists in the Slovak Republic will get information about 28 April and are asked to light a candle or keep a minute of silence for all the victims of work related accidents and diseases.

Contact Alexander Tazik

Source: Hazards magazine / Confederation of TU of SR and METALURG TU Federation

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South Africa


 

Building and Construction Workers Union BCWU plan a half day activity for International workers' memorial whicih will include a question and answer session.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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South Korea


 

28 April in South Korea Korean Federation of Construction Industry Trade Union (KFCITU) has announced that in the light of the recent merger of all the blue-collared construction unions and its dispute with POSCO company, this year's International Workers' Memorial Day activities will revolve around the company's accountability concerning workers who have been diagnosed with leukaemia.

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Remembering the dead of a detention centre fire Trade unionists in South Korea are being asked to remember the workers who died or were injured on 11 February 2007 when a fire broke out in a foreigners' detention centre in the city of Yeosu. The Seoul-Gyeonggi-Incheon Migrant's Trade Union, an organisation formed by and for migrant workers in South Korea, is asking trade unionists around the world to protest this tragic event.

Members of the union come from many countries, particularly Bangladesh, Nepal, Indonesia, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. The union says the fire swept through locked cells at Yeosu Immigration Controls Office, killing 9 detainees and wounding 18 others. Neither the alarm system nor sprinklers were found to be operational when the fire broke out. There are about 400,000 migrant workers in South Korea, of whom about 189,000 are ‘undocumented’.

They come to Korea either as ‘industrial trainees’ or under the government's employment permit system, which places them at specific factories and prohibits them from freely moving to other jobs. Most migrant workers experience inhumane treatment, unsafe working environments and low or unpaid wages.

Contact: devona@riseup.net

Source: ITUC

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Sweden


 

Sweden: Health and safety conferences planned in lead up to 28 April

LO-Sweden, the Swedish Trade Union Confederation, is cooperating with its affiliates and LO ofifices around the country to organise 10 health and safety conferences between 10 and 27 April 2007 in the build up to 28 April, Workers’ Memorial Day. Themes include the union role in accident investigations and health and safety and migrant workers.

Participating in the events will be the LO affiliates’ regional safety representatives, principal safety representatives and the health and safety officers of national union branches, as well as officials from the Swedish government and members of Sweden’s parliament.

Each conference will begin with a focus on workplace accidents. Delegates will be led through a new manual for safety representatives entitled ‘A tight situation: Trade union guidelines for what to do if there is a serious workplace accident’. While prevention will form the major theme, discussion will also focus on the role of health and safety representatives in the event of a serious accident. In particular, the activities will explore how to ensure that their special knowledge of the workplace is incorporated into the investigations conducted by the Swedish Work Environment Authority, police and prosecutors.

The regional conferences will begin with an examination of how opposition Social Democratic members of the Swedish parliament can promote health and safety issues. This will be followed with a debate on the theme of migrant workers’ health and safety.

Contact: Christina Järnstedt

Source: ITUC

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Taiwan


 

TAVOI As in past years TAVOI is organising a 28 April demonstration. This will be followed by a three-day worwhop on occupation health and safety in Asia with scholars and activists from India, Hong Kong, Japan and other Asian countries in attendance.

Source: Hazards magazine / TAVOI

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Tanzania


 

Unions and employers link up on 28 April The Trade Union Congress of Tanzania (TUCTA) will be cooperating with employers and the official occupational health and safety agency in the observance of 28 April, Workers’ Memorial Day. According to TUCTA acting secretary general Nicholas Mgaya, the TUCTA is working with the Association of Tanzania Employers (ATE) and the Occupational Safety and Health Agency of the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Youth Development to plan a joint national observance of 28 April.

Contact: Nicholas E Mgaya

Source: ITUC

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Togo


 

SYNBARCOT, SYNTRAGAVO and FTBC Séminaire d'un jour sur la santé et la sécurité au travail pour 70 personnes.

L'IBB dit de s'organiser! Syndicats puissants, vies préservées, IBB. plus

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Turkey


 

Turkish activities on 28 April Social Rights Association (SRA) in Turkey has announced the plan of activities for International Workers' Memorial Day.

This year on 28 April SRA is holding a press conference about work accidents and work related diseases on ocassion of Worker's Memorial Day.

SRA has prepared a detailed report on work safety that has been distributed to press and interested institutions and individuals. An English summary of that report is in preparation.

SRA plans wider activities on 28 April next year.

Contact Eyup Ozer

Source: Hazards magazine / SRA

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Uganda


 

UBCCEAWU asbestos march The Uganda Building Construction, Civil Engineering, Cement and Allied Workers Union will be marching to five separate construction sites on 28 April to raise awareness of the dangers of asbestos.

At each site UBCCEAWU will be handing out information leaflets on asbestos, lighting a Workers' Memorial Day candle and holding a question and answer session,

Source: Hazards magazine / BWI

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Ukraine


 

Ukraine Becomes 15th Country to Recognise 28 April

A decree introduced last August to make the 28 April period a “Week for Safety and Health at Work” in the Ukraine comes into force in time for this 2007 International Workers' Memorial Day.

Decree No. 685/2006 signed by the President means that Ukraine becomes the fifteenth country or territory to formally recognise 28 April. The others are: Argentina, Belgium, Bermuda, Brazil, Canada, Dominican Republic, Greece, Luxembourg, Panama, Peru, Poland, Portugal, Spain, and Taiwan.

An ‘Organisational Committee" on the preparation of 2007 activities includes representatives of the State Committee of Health and Safety at Work, central executive bodies, the Ukrainian Social Insurance Fund, employers' associations and trade unions has declared April 23-28, 2007 a “Week for Safety and Health at Work” with the ILO theme, “Safe and Healthy Workplaces – Making Decent Work A Reality”.

In a Statement issued last week, the Committee has asked all central and local state authorities, entrepreneurs’ and employers’ associations, trade unions, and heads of enterprises to participate in the Ukraine’s 28 April observance, as well as during the Week, by taking action to prevent workplace accidents and job-related fatalities, drawing attention to state of social protection for injured persons, and by commemorating workers killed due to their work.

The Statement reminds them of the special nature of this years Commemoration, and puts forward an Action Plan which includes seminars, conferences, exhibitions, round tables, discussions, and visits to enterprises. During the Week, the Committee will honour the memory of workers who died at workplace, and to visit families of victims in order to help them solve their financial, social or other problems. It has asked the media to provide coverage for all events Ukraine during the Week, as well as in other countries on the occasion of the World Day for Safety and Health at Work.

The committee’s Statement says, around 19 thousand workers were injured at the workplace, including 1077 fatalities, a risk of death or injury per 100 thousand workers that is higher than in the world’s developed countries. This resulted in more than 1,813 million hryvnas paid out of the country’s social insurance fund for costs related to compensation, medical and professional care and rehabilitation of persons who were injured or suffered work-related disease.

Contact Roman Kravchyk or Shilov

Source: ITUC

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United Kingdom


  TUC Workers Memorial Day is on 28th April. This year the theme is "Health and Safety needs not just regulations, but also enforcement." The TUC has set up a website for activities on the day. You will find it at:

Please send any information on any events being held to commemorate the day to this address healthandsafety@tuc.org.uk as soon as possible. TUC will update the information weekly until 21st April.

In addition there are WMD ribbons and car stickers available from the the Greater Manchester Hazards Centre. Car Sticker order formWMD ribbon order form

A number of unions are considering ordering car stickers for all union cars.

Hugh Robertson , Senior Health & Safety Officer,
Trades Union Congress.

Source: TUC

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GMB Fortifies Calls in UK for Official 28 April

GMB: Britain’s General Union is asking its 600,000 members to help convince Members of Parliament (MP) to back a call by British trade unions for 28 April to become officially recognized in the U.K.

78 MPs have already signed an ‘Early Day Motion (EDM)’ in the House of Commons calling for official recognition of the day. The EDM, submitted by Labour MP Michael Clapham, declares, “this House recognises that Workers' Memorial Day is an international commemorative event held on 28 April of each year and dedicated to those who have been killed and injured by workplace accidents or diseases”. It also takes note of ILO reports that one worker in the world dies of workplace accidents or illness every 15 seconds and 3,500 die in the UK each year from exposure to asbestos.

In thanking the MPs who already support 28 April, GMB national health and safety officer John McClean said, “We need them to do more than just lift their pens”. GMB members want 28 April as a national holiday.

Two other British trade unions also back the call for official status of 28 April, AMICUS, and the Communication Workers' Union (CWU).

U.K. organizers of 28 April 2007 are building on last year’s activities, when hundreds gathered at ceremonies across the country, adding to the thousands of events which took place worldwide.

Contact TUC website

Source: ITUC

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UNISON WMD statement UNISON, the rest of the union movement, and hazards campaigners continue to demand new laws and enforcement strategies that treat deaths caused by employer recklessness or negligence far more seriously than at present. Secondly we seek a new way of working that guarantees a workers right to a voice and the right to a safe and healthy workplace. more

UNISON commemorates Workers Memorial Day by campaigning for better work safety laws UNISON press release

Source: UNISON

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CWU Workers' Memorial Day - 28th April 2007 - 'Enforcement & Inspection'

This year's Workers' Memorial Day theme is ' Health and Safety needs not just regulations, but also enforcement & Inspection'

The purpose behind Workers' Memorial Day has always been to "remember the dead: fight for the living" and unions are asked to focus on both areas, by considering memorials to all those killed through work but at the same time ensuring that such tragedies are not repeated. That can best be done by building trade union organisation, and campaigning for stricter enforcement with higher penalties for breaches of health & safety laws. Full bulletin[pdf]

Source: CWU

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Hazards Campaign The Hazards Campaign is posting resources and activities on its webpages.

* 2007 activities to follow

* 2006 Activities - Click here to see the regularly updated list of WMD activities nationwide

* Lobby your MP! Sample letter

* WMD background more

* The Hazards Campaign has produced posters, ribbons and car stickers more

Source: Hazards Campaign

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USA


 

AFL-CIO Decades of struggle by workers and their unions have resulted in significant improvements in working conditions. But the toll of workplace injuries, illnesses and deaths remains enormous. Each year more than 56,000 workers die from job injuries and illnesses and another 6 million are injured. The unions of the AFL-CIO remember these workers on April 28, Workers Memorial Day. AFL-CIO news and resources pages

Death on the Job: The toll of neglect AFL-CIO report

Source: AFL-CIO

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Long Island Workers' Memorial Committee

WHAT The LI Workers' Memorial Committee will hold a ceremony to remember those who have been injured and died on the job. The committee will be joined by family members of deceased workers as well as union leaders and public officials in remembering those who have died in workplace catastrophes. Candles will be lit by family members for each deceased worker, followed by the planting of flowers at the Workers' Memorial. The 19 foot Granite Monument was dedicated in 1999 to workers who have lost their lives as a result of workplace injuries. Committee & program participants will also be available before the event.

WHEN 2PM - SATURDAY - APRIL 28.

During the past decade, April 28 has been designated as Workers' Memorial Day, when hundreds of communities and work-sites recognize workers who have been killed or injured on the job

The date was chosen because it is the anniversary of the enactment of the national Occupational Heath and Safety Act (OSHA).

WHERE The New York State Office Building, Veterans Memorial Highway in Hauppauge - (1/2 mile after the end of Northern State Pkwy or 3/4 mile North of Exit 56 LI Expressway)

WHO The Long Island Workers Memorial Committee is comprised of public safety advocates and representatives of organized labor and is headed by Melodie Guerrera. (631)-630-2238

Source: Hazards Magazine / Long Island Workers' Memorial Committee

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Oregon AFL-CIO Workers Memorial Day Each April, Oregon’s unions host Workers Memorial Day on or about the anniversary of the passage of the federal OSHA Act. The event gives family members, friends and co-workers of those killed or permanently disabled on the job a place to honor their loved ones.

In 2007, the event will be held:

Friday, April 27, at noon
State Capitol steps
Salem

For more information, contact Steve Lanning at + 1 503-585-6320

Source: Oregon AFL-CIO

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Venezula


 

IWMD commemoration events in Venezuela As follow up to the decision of the Andean Community member States to formally recognize 28 April the ‘Instituto Laboral Andino’ (ILA) and the ‘Comite Sindical Andino de Salud Laboral y Medio Ambiente’ (CCLA) have been involved in the coordination various activities.

In Venezuela a global forum to implement Decent Work and promote cooperation between worker and employer organisations will be organised in Caracas this 28 April for the purpose of creating better material to safeguard occupational health. This should be common practice say the organisers of the forum, but is a question that is often overlooked. This forum will promote social dialogue within enterprises to deal with the question more consistently, through shared information and better communication. A lawyer, and technical experts that deal with inspections, regulations and equipment operations will be on hand to lead the discussions that will take place for half a day

In addition a special committee has organized two commemoration events. The first will bring together representatives from five trade union centres to discuss priorities for prevention and OHS services.

The second event will take place next 16 May and will take place at a seminar for 100 selected workers to discuss OHS issues.

Contact Carlos Ortiz Cornejo

Source: ITUC

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World Health Organisation


 

ICD Occupational Cancer Seminar Announced WHO: The World Health Organisation will hold a seminar on the prevention of occupational and environmental cancer on 27 April in Geneva as a lead up to this year’s 28 April International Commemoration Day (ICD).

In announcing the Seminar, Dr. Ivan D. Ivanov, Officer in Charge of Workers' Health Action, Interventions for Healthy Environments, Department of Public Health and Environment pointed out the ILO and WHO both organize events each year for 28 April, to join the worldwide tribute to the 3.5 million workers who die annually because of occupational diseases and injuries.

In 2007, he said, the organisations are devoting their ‘World Day for Safety and Health at Work’ to creating a culture of healthy and safe workplaces and to the prevention of occupational and environmental cancer.

Ivanov cited a recent WHO study which found that at least 1.4 million cancer deaths could be prevented annually through healthy working and living environments. The 27 April seminar, he said, would focus on ongoing efforts by the WHO programmes to promote prevention, explore opportunities for extending efforts to more countries, and create synergies and partnership with other international stakeholders, such as the ILO and the trade unions.

The seminar will highlight specific WHO initiatives related to prevention of occupational cancer, and in this way, will serve as a milestone towards a global workshop "Preventing Cancer Through Healthy Environments" that will be organized by WHO and the French Cancer Institute in Geneva, 8-10 October 2007.

Dr. M. Neira, Director, Public Health and Environment Programme will facilitate the seminar, which will include a presentation on the Global Union campaign to fight occupational cancer, including a worldwide ban on the production and use of asbestos.

The first part of agenda will be devoted to discussion on programmes being run by the WHO, UNEP and others to promote prevention of occupational cancer. This will include reports on the WHO Module of Cancer Prevention, asbestos-related cancer, smoke-free workplaces, and occupational exposures to UV. It will also incorporate representatives from the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the International Metal Workers' Federation (IMF).

This second half of the agenda will focus on environmental causes of cancers and will include such topics as: radon and ionizing radiation, arsenic in drinking water, multilateral environmental agreements, the French perspective. The seminar will wrap-up with the launch of the WHO/INC Global Workshop, “Preventing Cancer Through Health Environments.”

The Seminar is open to all WHO staff, and external participants are welcome to attend by invitation.

Contact Ivan D. Ivanov

Source: ITUC

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