The ‘war’ on occupational injuries and diseases can be won through partnerships – DoL

Despite the efforts by the Department of Labour to prevent occupational injuries and preserve the health of workers in workplaces, occupational injuries and diseases continue unabated

To deal with the spate of occupational injuries and diseases, the Department of Labour’s Occupational Health and Hygiene (OHH) Directorate within the branch Inspection and Enforcement Services (IES), is to host the National Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Conference this month. The conference will held at Emperors Palace in Ekurhuleni, Gauteng Province. The conference will be held on 24-26th July 2019. It will be held under the theme: “Strategic co-operation to promote decent work and achieve ‘Vision Zero’ in occupational injuries and diseases”.

Department of Labour Chief Inspector Tibor Szana said the hosting of the conference was an exciting moment. Szana said this conference will be coming with continuing professional development points for several sectors to ensure the foster of compliance with healthcare standards.

This conference is CPD verified by Saiosh with 5 CPD Points
Saiosh President, Sanjau Munnoo, will be one of the a presenters

The Department is hosting the conference to advocate the work performed by the Department to ensure safe working places. The conference is also being held to promote the worker’s health in the advancement of Agenda 2030, that seeks to advance sustainable development goals.

The conference will bring together great minds that will share experiences and solutions in the OHS environment amidst the dawn of the fourth industrial revolution.

“I believe we are winning the war, from where we were, to where we are … undoubtedly. There are changes in the industry. There are more inspections performed in the construction sector per year than any other sector. However, this war can only be won through the partnerships that we have and those that we still need to put in place wherever and whenever it may be necessary, hence the theme for the conference,” Szana said.

He said there was no possibility of the Department winning this war on its own, “that is precisely why we are constantly engaging our partners on matters that mutually affect us. One failure in any area taints the entire industry. We need to hold hands in partnership to succeed. Health and safety is about ensuring a sustainable work environment where workers are kept out of poverty and unemployment through the type of work environment provided to every worker”.

The conference will be addressed by: Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi; Employment and Labour Deputy Minister Boitumelo Elizabeth Moloi; Department of Labour Director-General Thobile Lamati; International Labour Organization Director Dr Joni Musabayana; Department of Labour Inspection and Enforcement Services Deputy Director-General Aggy Moiloa; and Compensation Fund Commissioner Vuyo Mafata.

During the three-day conference there will also be breakaway sessions to reflect on a number of subjects. The breakaway sessions will discuss: gender aspects in OHS; psychological conditions after an occupational injury; health effects on people living close to electrical power lines; disability prevention and re-integration at work; applying ergonomics to promote a positive culture in occupational health and safety; electromagnetic radiation in the explosive industry; social security system; health impact of shift work; ignition risks due to optical radiation; mental health at work; impact of aging workers on OHS; ionizing radiation health effects and protective measures; emerging psychosocial work hazards: the new world of work; OHS in the informal sector: African perspective and construction health and safety.

On the second day the breakaway session will focus on: control of gases use in refrigeration and air-conditioning plants; the role of epidemiological research in preventing occupational diseases; integrated worker health and well-being in construction industry; addressing occupational diseases in SA; health effects when using gas appliances inside houses; impact of HIV/AIDS and TB in the world of work; management of noise induced hearing loss in the iron and steel sector; occupational health in the chemical industry; bio risk safety management; protection of workers against noise and vibration; respiratory disorders at work; the role of education and training to vibration.

Coinciding with the conference will on the second day be a gala dinner to confer awards to inspectors. There will also be an exhibition of industry players to demonstrate latest trends in the field of health and safety.

A total of 1000 delegates are expected to attend the conference.

For more information contact:

Bulelwa Huna

Department of Labour Senior Specialist: Occupational Health & Hygiene

Cell: +2782 908 2885

Tel: +2712 – 309 4407


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