Good occupational health and safety benefits both workers and employers, and prevention of risks is key. Pressure from trade unions is a major factor in driving prevention measures. Unions make workplaces safer and union action at EU level to promote improvement in EU Health and Safety rules is crucial.
Work-related cancer is the cause of over 100,000 deaths each year. We call on the EU to impose binding occupational exposure limits (BOELs) on at least 50 carcinogenic substances used in European workplaces. Legislation is needed on repro-toxins and nanotechnology and the EU must catch up with other workplace developments like robotics and Artificial Intelligence.
Musculoskeletal disorders are the number one occupational illness in the EU, while psychosocial problems such as stress, violence and bullying are increasingly common. The ETUC demands strong, Europe-wide legislation to make European workplaces healthy and safe, with regular, independent inspection.