Saturday, 27 November, 2021

Ensure workplace safety for workers

We are a developing nation where technology is growing fast. But the workers who toil hard in different factories and engineering workshops are deprived of their required safety. The safety issues provided for the workers are not properly maintained in these manufacturing units. A five-column lead picture of this newspaper testifies to this fact. There, we find a young worker who is working at a workshop in a hazardous situation. He is carrying on his duty without any shield over his face while the shower of sparks produced from the machine might damage his eyes at any careless moment.

The employer of the worker was supposed to provide him with the essential safety gears, but he miserably failed to do so which may be termed as a criminal negligence. This is a common sight both in urban and rural areas of the country where we find a mushroom growth of engineering workshops. Many  accidents  have  already  taken  place  in factories and workshops for  lack of  safety  of  the  workers. In our country, the workshops' safety situation is horrifying by global standard. However, promotion of decent, safe, and healthy working conditions and environment has been a continuous objective of the ILO. As to why, the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970 (OSH Act) has been passed to prevent workers from being killed or otherwise harmed at work. The law requires employers to provide their employees with working conditions that are free of known dangers.

Each and every worker has the right to a safe workplace; so working safety priorities should be addressed with due urgency. We are well-aware about the existence of the Department of Inspection for Factories and Establishments which is responsible for health and safety inspection in manufacturing plants. Relevant inspectors should perform regular inspections in these units so that the employers are compelled to abide by the occupational safety and health rules properly. There should be a provision of harsh punishment for the rule-violating employers. It is for the greater interest of national development that workers' safety must be ensured by minimising accident hazards and risks as much as possible.