How safe and healthy are you at work? | IMPAC health and safety
17 April, 2019 | News
This year, World Day for Safety and Health at Work is on Sunday 28 April. The day serves as a timely reminder to take stock of your health and safety while at work, and to consider the areas that you and your business could improve in.
The annual day is run by the International Labour Organisation (ILO), who aim to promote safe, healthy, and decent work.
World Day for Safety and Health at Work also coincides with International Workers' Memorial Day, an international day of remembrance for workers killed, disabled, injured, or made unwell by their work. You can find out more about this day here.
Why we need health and safety at work
According to WorkSafe, each year in New Zealand up to 900 people die from work-related illnesses, and 50-60 die from work-related injuries.
WorkSafe CEO Nicole Rosie, in an interview with RadioNZ at the start of the year, discussed workplace death statistics, stating that although the number of workplace deaths dropped in 2018, it was still too high a number at 42. Both 2017 and 2016 saw the number climb to 50 deaths.
Regarding why the number had improved, Rosie said, “It's not one thing, it's multiple things. There's a lot more businesses that are starting to see the value of health and safety, not from a compliance perspective, but from actually overall business performance as well.”
Here’s some useful resources
Now, more than ever, businesses are prioritising the health, safety, and wellbeing of their employees. There are tonnes of resources available, with ideas for how you can effect change in your health and safety at work. We’ve rounded up some of our favourites...
To support their call for New Zealanders to make 2019 the year we take workplace stress seriously, the Mental Health Foundation has released new, free resources around minimising and managing workplace stress. This includes a PowerPoint presentation, fact sheets on stress in the workplace and understanding it, worksheets, and activities.
The International Labour Organisation, the driving force behind World Day for Safety and Health at Work, has published 33 original and exclusive think pieces to their site in celebration of the day. We recommend:
- Annet Lenderink’s Major changes in working lives and the ill health this might bring
- Maria Neira’s Towards a healthier future of work
- Andrew Hale’s Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) professions: who are they and why do we need them?
- Maureen Dollard & Daniel Neser’s The Work Stress Conundrum
The ILO has also previously produced a toolbox of resources and a set of fact sheets.
An earlier IMPAC blog outlined three easy ways to look after your wellbeing at work, and the tips are still relevant today – go for a walk out of the office, take your breaks, and chat to your colleagues.
Lastly, here at IMPAC, we’re loving WorkWell, a free workplace health and safety initiative which supports workplaces to ‘work better through wellbeing’. We’re signed up to their accreditation scheme and are hoping to achieve ‘bronze’ status soon. The programme comes with a set of easy-to-follow steps and relevant resources, designed to help you improve the health and wellness of your team.
For more interesting views and news, follow us on LinkedIn — and remember, as World Day for Safety and Health causes us to pause and reflect, everything we do is ultimately about each one of us being home safe and well from work, every day.