Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) is a fundamental human and workers’ right, which is declared and recognised in international instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 23), the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Article 7) and nearly half of the instruments of the International Labour Organization (ILO). The ILO Centenary Declaration for the Future of Work, also endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly, reiterates that safety and health at work should be enjoyed by all workers.
OHS cannot be separated from other broader issues that the society faces. Highlighted by the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, OHS is evidently an integral element of economic and social development. It is also an increasingly important building block for our adaptation to climate change.
The ITUC-Asia Pacific, together with its affiliates, promotes OHS as a fundamental right of workers. We believe that OHS is critical in protecting workers’ lives and livelihoods.