As Jamaica joins the world in observing World Day for Safety and Health At Work, it gives me great pleasure to report that the long-awaited Occupational Safety and Health Bill has been tabled in Parliament.
This landmark legislation embodies the Ministry’s deep desire to ensure that every Jamaican worker can enjoy decent condition of work, consistent with human dignity.
Decent and safe work is a vital pillar in the economic growth and prosperity agenda which the Government is pursuing, as well as a fundamental part of the country’s Vision 2030 aspirations for sustainable development.
This OSH legislation will bring broad changes for companies to implement programmes, policies, systems and procedures to promote a preventative safety and health culture in Jamaican workplaces.
It is against this background that I endorse this year’s theme – “Optimizing the Collection and Usage of Occupational Safety and Health Data” – which directs us to focus on data collection and analysis in understanding the nexus between our occupations and associated injuries, diseases, and deaths.
It also unequivocally underscores the challenges faced by developed and developing nations such as Jamaica in gathering and using accurate, relevant data.
Over the years, we have progressed in areas of data sources and collection but there is still significant room for improvement.
As a nation, we should vigorously pursue initiatives to ensure OSH data collection that is relevant to our Jamaican environment, as analysis and usage will help to reduce incidences of injuries, diseases and deaths.
I, therefore, encourage employers, trade unions, workers, civil, social and economic groups to “Optimize the Collection and Usage of OSH Data” to promote a safety and health culture through campaigns, awareness, training sessions and other initiatives.
I wish for all continued safety and health on this World Day for Safety and Health at Work.