28/04/2014

Workers H&S Is Not A 'Luxury' To Be Dispensed - ICTU

The Irish Congress of Trade Unions said today that workers' health and safety was not a "luxury" to be dispensed with when budgetary constraints dictated and called for full resourcing and strict enforcement of safety regulations, to prevent death or injury at work.

The call was made by Congress General Secretary David Begg at an event to mark Worker's Memorial Day 2014 – an international day of remembrance for those killed, injured or made unwell by their work.

Mr Begg unveiled a commemorative plaque at a special dedication ceremony at the headquarters of the Communications' Workers Union (CWU), in Dublin. The event also saw the participation of Martin O'Halloran, CEO of the Health & Safety Authority; Labour MEP for Dublin, Emer Costello; Eamon Devoy, Chair of the Congress Health & Safety Committee; Terry Delaney, Deputy General Secretary of the CWU and Sylvester Cronin, the Workers' member for Ireland on the board of EU-OSHA, the European Agency for Safety & Health at Work.

Speaking at the event, Mr Begg said: "As we gather to mark Workers' Memorial Day 2014, we should remember that the health and safety of working people is not a luxury that can be dispensed with as budgetary constraints dictate.

"No family should ever see a loved one arrive home from work in a coffin or on a stretcher. Doing our utmost to prevent death and injury in the workplace must be a given, not an afterthought.

"And that requires proper resources combined with a rigorous inspection regime and strict enforcement. That is the only fitting tribute we could pay to the memory of those who have lost their lives or been injured at work."

(CD)

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