The European Trade Union Confederation calls on the EU to stop procrastinating and at last act to put an end to cancer in the workplace.
It denounces the fact that the 2004 directive relating to exposure to carcinogens or mutagens at work has been undergoing revision for the past 12 years without any change having been made. And yet, 100,000 people in the EU die each year of cancer related to an occupational exposure; it is the most prevalent cause of work-related death.
The ETUC therefore demands that the Dutch presidency of the EU keep its promise made at the start of its term of office, namely to ensure that the directive is amended and that industrial exposure limit values for 50 of the substances responsible for occupational cancers are defined. At present, the directive defines limit values for only three substances.
It also demands that the European Commission apply these limits by the end of 2016 rather than wait until 2020 as proposed. “The Commission must stop procrastinating, waiting until 2020 would be irresponsible and unacceptable,” said Esther Lynch, Confederal Secretary of the ETUC.
Infographic Stop cancer at work