Community news|30/01/15

The European Economic and Social Committee states its opinion regarding the EU Strategic Framework on OSH for 2014-2020

Home > The news of EUROGIP and occupational risks in Europe > The European Economic and Social Committee states its opinion regarding the EU Strategic Framework on OSH for 2014-2020

In a plenary meeting of 11 December 2014, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) adopted an opinion on the European Union’s Strategic Framework on Health and Safety at Work for the period 2014-2020. This follows on from the European Commission’s consultation, in accordance with the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, on its Communication of 6 June 2014.

Key points of the EESC’s opinion are as follows:

  • It strongly approves the Commission’s stated intention of focusing on prevention and simplification of the rules – without jeopardizing the existing levels of protection – and compliance with those rules. The strategy should ensure a balance between a high level of protection and the administrative burden for businesses.
  • It is pleased to see the great interest shown by the Commission for SMEs, and by the opinions, information and guidelines it provide them with via ICTs, and the strengthening of coordination between government departments in providing support for SMEs.
  • It considers it essential that labour inspectors should receive more and better training: in around half of the Member States, the minimum threshold recommended by the ILO (namely 1 inspector per 10,000 workers) has not been reached.
  • It recommends that the Commission adopt measures allowing young people in general, young people recently made redundant, trainees and apprentices to receive appropriate and practical information and training.
  • It invites businesses and the Member States to invest more in prevention and to ensure worker participation.
  • It invites the Commission to publish very urgently the reports and statistical analyses of the list of occupational diseases, including accidents occurring during working hours. It feels that the work of the specialist agencies should be stepped up and widely disseminated, and that good practices should be disseminated to help reinforce a workplace safety culture. It also considers it necessary to investigate new risks in greater detail and to prepare appropriate measures (of a legislative or other type) based on the results of the research undertaken.
  • It invites the Commission to step up discussions and consultations with the social partners and to develop joint initiatives, this approach being fundamental for effective implementation of the strategy.
  • It criticizes the fact that the Commission defines no quantified European objective for occupational injuries and diseases, and recommends that Member States incorporate this quantification within the framework of their national strategies.

Download the EESC opinion
Consult Eurogip’s note on the Strategic Framework 2014-2020

Discover other news

Community news


OSH measures key to prevent violence and harassment at work

More than one in five workers in the 25 countries surveyed have experienced violence and harassment at work, according to a new report by the ILO. Creating an environment free of these problems requires “a cooperative approach and social dialogue within companies on occupational health and safety (OHS)”.

Community news


Lead and diisocyanates: Council approves new limit values

The new directive adopted today reduces the occupational exposure limit values for lead and its compounds, which are toxic to reproduction, by a factor of five, and introduces new limit values for diiosocyanates, to which 4.2 million workers are exposed and which can cause asthma and skin diseases.



OS&H in Europe: where are we now?

So where are we in Europe when it comes to health and safety at work? That's the question we put to William Cockburn Salazar, the new Executive Director of the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA), in the first episode of the EUROGIP Discussions.