Occupational safety, health enforcement needs review

DOSH policy and responsibility is about providing and maintaining a quality, safe and healthy workplace and system. (File pic: For Illustration purposes only)

THE Association for Community and Dialogue is concerned about the high accident statistics provided by the Department of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH).

In 2017, 183 construction workers lost their lives at worksites. This translates to 14 fatalities for every 10,000 workers employed. As for accidents, DOSH states there were 42,513 throughout the country, giving an average of 116 daily (NST, Feb 17).

It is hoped that with amendments to the Occupational Safety and Health Act 1994 Act, proposed to be tabled in Parliament this month, DOSH’s strengths and weaknesses could be deliberated in Parliament with the objective of enhancing its enforcement capabilities.

DOSH policy and responsibility is about providing and maintaining a quality, safe and healthy workplace and system.

Employers must ensure all staff receive relevant information, directives, training and supervision on how to carry out tasks in a correct manner that poses no risks to health.

The Occupational Safety and Health Act 1994 Act was written for proactive action rather than when an incident has taken place. Has DOSH played its role effectively as a strong enforcement body? Does it have enough manpower? Does it play a critical role in monitoring critical public projects, or does it assume that contractors are competent in exercising their duties and hold them accountable only after a disaster takes place?

The statistics of 42,513 accidents daily demands DOSH accountability.

The Human Resources Ministry should review the current role of DOSH and evaluate its practice in line with its mandate.

By RONALD BENJAMIN .

Read more @ https://www.nst.com.my/opinion/letters/2019/03/466274/occupational-safety-health-enforcement-needs-review

Comments are closed.