- Hon. Nograles, Chairperson of the Committee on Labor and Employment and distinguished members of the House of Representatives,
- Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, magandang hapon sa inyong lahat! [Good afternoon to you all]
Safety and health at work is a basic human right and a decent work issue.
Everyone has the right to work in a safe and healthy environment, regardless of the industry they are in or the type of work that they do.
Among the world's record of the most severe Occupational Safety and Health accidents, fatalities in factory fires rank almost immediately behind natural disasters such as earthquakes and tsunamis.
Global estimates of the ILO revealed that:
- every 15 seconds, a worker dies from a work-related accident or disease
- every 15 seconds, 153 workers have a work-related accident.
Economies lose as well. The cost of accidents and ill health amounts to an estimated 4 per cent of the world’s GDP.
ILO Director-General Guy Ryder expressed great sadness by the news of the death of in the Valenzuela Factory Fire and called for stronger safety and health measures.
The ILO has adopted more than 40 standards dealing with occupational safety and health (OSH) and over 40 Codes of Practice. Nearly half of ILO instruments deal directly or indirectly with occupational safety and health issues.
The Philippines has identified ILO Conventions on Occupational Safety and Health as priority for ratification under the Philippine Labor and Employment Plan.
Preventive measures, reporting and inspection practices are very important to avoid such tragedies.
ILO standards on safety and health provide essential tools for governments, employers, and workers to establish such practices and to provide for maximum safety at work.
From the ILO’s perspective, the real challenge is to build and strengthen a safety and health culture, which require a collective effort by governments, employers and workers.
Rest assured that the ILO stands ready to assist the Philippines, working with the government, employers, workers and their organizations and all stakeholders to build and strengthen a national occupational safety and health culture.