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ILO – World Day for Safety and Health at Work 2020 – Stop the pandemic: Safety and health at work can save lives

Recognizing the great challenge that governments, employers, workers and whole societies are facing worldwide to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Day for Safety and Health at Work will focus on addressing the outbreak of infectious diseases at work, focusing on the COVID-19 pandemic.

Concern is growing over the continuing rise in COVID-19 infections in some parts of the world and the ability to sustain declining rates in others. Governments, employers, workers and their organizations face enormous challenges as they try to combat the COVID-19 pandemic and protect safety and health at work. Beyond the immediate crisis, there are also concerns about resuming activity in a manner that sustains progress made in suppressing transmission.

The World Day for Safety and Health at Work will focus on addressing the outbreak of infectious diseases at work, focussing on the COVID-19 pandemic. The aim is to stimulate national tripartite dialogue on safety and health at work. The ILO is using this day to raise awareness on the adoption of safe practices in workplaces and the role that occupational safety and health (OSH) services play. It will also focus on the medium to long-term, including recovery and future preparedness, in particular, integrating measures into OSH management systems and policies at the national and enterprise levels.

The SafeDay report – In the face of a pandemic: Ensuring Safety and Health at Work  highlights the occupational safety and health (OSH) risks arising from the spread of COVID-19. It also explores measures to prevent and control the risk of contagion, psychosocial risks, ergonomic and other work-related safety and health risks associated with the pandemic. The ILO Centenary Declaration adopted in June 2019 declared that “safe and healthy working conditions are fundamental to decent work”. This is even more significant today, as ensuring safety and health at work is indispensable in the management of the pandemic and the ability to resume work.