(24 April 2013) In the lead up to the World Day for Safety and Health at Work, 28 April – also the International Day of Commemoration of Dead and Injured Workers – the International Labour Organization has published a new report emphasizing the importance of the prevention of occupational diseases at work.
"Well-known occupational diseases, such as pneumoconiosis, remain widespread, while relatively new occupational diseases, such as mental and musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) are on the rise.
While much progress has been made in addressing the challenges of occupational diseases, there is an urgent need to strengthen the capacity for their prevention in national occupational safety and health systems. With the collaborative effort of governments and employers’ and workers’ organizations, the fight against this hidden epidemic will have to feature prominently in new global and national agendas for safety
and health. This report for the World Day for Safety and Health at Work outlines the current situation concerning occupational diseases and presents proposals for addressing this serious Decent Work deficit”.
Health and safety at work: Facts and figures
- 2.02 million people die each year from work-related diseases.
- 321,000 people die each year from occupational accidents.
- 160 million non-fatal work-related diseases per year.
- 317 million non –fatal occupational accidents per year.
This means that:
- Every 15 seconds, a worker dies from a work-related accident or disease.
- Every 15 seconds, 151 workers have a work-related accident.
Deaths and injuries take a particularly heavy toll in developing countries, where a large part of the population is engaged in hazardous activities, such as agriculture, construction, fishing and mining.
For more information, see the ILO report below or the ILO website.
EPSU supports and welcomes the actions and activities taking place worldwide on 28 April to improve working conditions and legislation.