Labour Officials to Heighten Awareness of Work Safety and Health Issues

Basseterre, St. Kitts, April 21, 2017 (SKNIS): The Department of Labour will ramp up its usual awareness of issues surrounding Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) as it joins with international partners to commemorate the 2017 World Day for Safety and Health at Work, next week.

According to, the day is observed annually on April 28, and was designed to promote safe, healthy and decent work. It has been observed by the International Labour Organization (ILO) since 2003.

Officials at the St. Kitts Department of Labour have partnered with the ILO, and the St. Christopher and Nevis Social Security Board along with the department’s tripartite constituents – the St. Kitts-Nevis Trades and Labour Union, and the St. Kitts and Nevis Chamber of Industry and Commerce, – to mark the event through a series of activities.

They begin on Sunday April 23 with a radio and television broadcast by the Senior Minister and Minister of Labour in the Federal Cabinet, Honourable Vance Amory. The address is expected to touch on efforts by the Government of St. Kitts and Nevis to transform the work environment under the decent work agenda. Partners will be challenged to aid the transformation.

World Day for Safety and Heath falls on a Friday this year. T-shirt Awareness Day will help to remind/educate the public on the matter. An awareness display will also be mounted at the Labour Department on Church Street, and a radio broadcast will add to the promotion of the issues. A seminar will also be held on April 28, at the Conference Room of Her Majesty’s Customs and Excise Department. Forty participants from the manufacturing, hospitality and construction sectors will participate. A church service on Sunday April 30, wraps up the activities.

“The time has come for us to begin to focus on the critical need to improve our capacity to collect and utilize reliable occupational safety and health data,” a labour official said. “We recognize that the collection and utilization of reliable OSH data is indispensable for the detection of new hazards and emerging risks, the identification of hazardous sectors, the development of preventative measures, as well as the implementation of policies, systems and programmes at international, national and enterprise levels. OSH data provides the basis for setting priorities and measuring progress.”

This fits into the theme for the 2017 World Day for Safety and Health at Work, which is “Optimize the Collection and Use of OSH Data.”

The working population therefore should expect to see labour officers visiting their respective places of work more frequently as they conduct site inspections to ensure the environment is safe and healthy.

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