Occupational Health and Safety
It is the human right o every employee to enjoy working within conditions that offer ultimate safety (Hamalainen et al 183). As such, occupational health and safety standards offer guidelines for application in the work place towards the achievement of effective health and safety standards. Different countries have different legislations for occupational health and safety. However, any organization desires to provide a safe working environment for all employees due to various benefits associated with this such as improved motivation and productivity among workers; increased work output and prevention of unnecessary costs.
Safe working environment contributes to the productivity of workers, thereby making them capable of providing for their families. This in effect improves the overall sustainability of a country’s development (Andersen et al 620). Additionally, provision of a safe working environment helps to prevent pollution thus protecting future generations. Through a safe environment for work, employee acquisition and retention is made easier due to the attractive effects of a safe working environment.
The differences in occupational safety standards across the world make companies develop different safety cultures. For instance in the US, the key objective of the occupational health and safety standard is to promote safety and health of all people at work. This is achieved through the prevention of unnecessary harm, injury in the work environment. The enactment and implementation of the safety standards was based on the need developed due to the diverse work place characteristics. In addition to this, the US department of labor focuses on work place design standards that eliminate hazards in order to achieve greater safety standards. However, one key area that is yet to be understood in terms of hazards is the emergence of nanotechnology. It is purported that in case such technologies result in the release of nano-particles, methods will have to be established for dealing with this type of hazards.
In Canada, the Occupational Health and Safety Standards are somehow similar to those of the US. As in the US, the Canadian laws make it mandatory for the employer to be responsible for the health and safety of the employee in the work place. On the other hand, the safety standards in Canada require employers to provide safety points such as instructions, first aid facilities, supervision, training, adequate information and safe drinking water to the employees.
In addition to this, they are to provide fast response in case an emergency has been reported. In each case, the employees are obliged to obey all the safety regulations while the government’s role is in the enforcement of these regulations. In Canada, well established bodies offer reference for safety through identification of hazards, and assisting in the resolution of work related issues among other actions.
In Europe, occupational health and safety standards have the role of assisting organizations to achieve their capacity for the prevention of work related injuries. From the European occupational health and safety standards, the responsibility of the standards is to enhance [preventive measures through the ability to tackle emerging risks as well as hazards. In this context, the European regulation differs from the US as well as that of Canada. However, the three regulations are all similar in terms of employer obligations.
The strategies employed in all the standards are based on the elimination of risks, elimination of hazards and prevention of harm. In China on the other hand, the key problems faced include the lack of awareness about occupational health and safety, and unsupportive management structures. China has safety standards based on the regulation of dangerous chemical usage (Rastogi et al 3). The employers have similar roles to those in the US while the department of Health in the government plays the enforcement role. The migration of key hazardous industries to the rural areas also causes a challenge to occupational health and safety in China.
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