Safety and health at work in South Asia

A salt making factory employing safety precautions for its workers in Mumbai, India. © ILO

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Occupational accidents and diseases have an impact not only on the lives of individual workers but also on the productivity and profitability of enterprises and ultimately, on the welfare of society. In response, governments, workers and employers across the world are increasing their efforts to prevent accidents and diseases at the workplace.

In India, ILO’s activities in the area of occupational safety and health (OSH) have focused on supporting the efforts of the constituents in promoting national legislation, and updating it in line with international labour standards. In addition, other interventions aim at strengthening the capacity of workers’ and employers’ organizations, along with the promotion of tripartite consultations. Finally, ILO’s work also focuses on compliance strategies and strengthened monitoring and enforcement mechanisms.

Key activities include reviews of the labour administration system at the national and state levels, workshops to promote ratification of the ILO conventions on occupational safety and health, and capacity building on labour inspection and occupational health and safety at the state level.

Occupational health and safety is also one of the five SCORE training modules, which is being implemented in India through the SCORE project. Efforts have been made to promote awareness on OSH among micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) in collaboration with FICCI, the Ministry of MSMEs and the Ministry of Labour and Employment.

Throughout the subregion, the ratification rate of the ILO’s conventions related to OSH remains low. However, governments, workers’ and employers’ organizations are now showing stronger commitment to improving and promoting OSH standards and related inspection systems. Following recent work-related tragedies, the ILO’s long-standing technical support to these countries has significantly increased.

Key resources

  1. ILO-DGFASLI National Tripartite Workshop for Promoting the Ratification of ILO Convention on Occupational Safety and Health

    The ILO, in collaboration with the Directorate General, Factory Advice Service and Labour Institutes (DGFASLI) organized a national tripartite workshop on Promoting the Ratification of ILO Convention on Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) from 18 – 20 November 2015 in Mumbai. More details about the event and the presentations on OSH made by the panellists on the day can be found here.

  2. SCORE Phase II - Sustaining Competitive and Responsible Enterprises Programme

    The SCORE programme is a global ILO Technical Cooperation Programme, headquartered in Geneva and is operational in 9 countries. The overall objective of the programme is to assist Small & Medium Enterprises to become more sustainable through being cleaner, more productive and competitive, and contribute in creation of more and better quality jobs in the economy.SCORE training package comprises of 5 modules - workplace cooperation which is the mandatory module and 4 optional modules which are quality management, clean production, human resource management, and occupational health and safety.

  3. Guidelines for implementing the occupational safety and health provisions of the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006

    The purpose of these guidelines is to assist States to implement the occupational safety and health provisions of the Maritime Labour Convention, 2006 (MLC, 2006).

  4. Conditions of Work and Employment Series No. 67: The effects of non-standard forms of employment on worker health and safety

    The working paper discusses the changes to work arrangements and its effects on worker health and safety witnessed globally over the past 40 years.. Overall, the changes have been characterised by less contract duration and job security, more irregular working hours, increased use of third parties, growth of various forms of dependent self-employment, and also bogus/informal work arrangements.

  5. Encyclopaedia of Occupational Health and Safety

    The new Encyclopaedia website is a cutting-edge global knowledge platform for sharing occupational safety and health (OSH) information and good practices. This online multidisciplinary book of facts and knowledge presents the general user with a panoramic view of the field.