Safety culture

Scientific academy to ILO: Health and safety should be a fundamental workplace right

Photo: AzmanL/iStockphoto

Bologna, Italy — International scientific academy Collegium Ramazzini is calling on the International Labor Organization to designate occupational health and safety a Fundamental Right at Work.

In a statement released March 23, Collegium Ramazzini notes that, in June 2019, ILO agreed “to consider, as soon as possible,” including safe and healthy working conditions in its framework on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work.

ILO estimates that nearly 2.8 million people die each year as a result of work-related injuries and diseases.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has increased dramatically this work-related toll,” the statement reads. “This harm is preventable where occupational health and safety is given the necessary resources and priority. Making occupational health and safety a Fundamental Right at Work will place an obligation on ILO member states to give the issue this priority, with consequent benefits for workers, business and society as a whole.


“The Collegium Ramazzini urges the ILO governing body to take at the earliest opportunity the necessary steps to implement its decision to treat occupational health and safety as a Fundamental Right at Work.”

The academy is made up of physicians and scientists from 35 countries, according to its website, and its mission is to “increase scientific knowledge of the environmental and occupational causes of disease and to transmit this knowledge to decision-makers, the media and the global public to protect public health, prevent disease and save lives.”

Post a comment to this article

Safety+Health welcomes comments that promote respectful dialogue. Please stay on topic. Comments that contain personal attacks, profanity or abusive language – or those aggressively promoting products or services – will be removed. We reserve the right to determine which comments violate our comment policy. (Anonymous comments are welcome; merely skip the “name” field in the comment box. An email address is required but will not be included with your comment.)