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GECCU launches Occupational Health, Safety Policy

GECCU launches Occupational Health, Safety Policy

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Labour Commissioner Patrice Roberts – Samuel has described the launch of the Occupational Safety and Health Policy (OSHP) Procedures and Guidelines by the General Employees Co-operative Credit Union (GECCU) as historic.{{more}}

Speaking on Tuesday 7th October, at the launch at Frenches House, Roberts-Samuel affirmed that OSHP is the “business of all of us”.

The Labour Commissioner declared that the ultimate “goal is for a safe and healthy working environment”. According to Roberts-Samuel, once the workplace is safe and healthy, productivity will increase because occupational illness and injury will be minimal.

Roberts-Samuel further noted, that GECCU as an employer has to ensure that they have a “safe, sound, healthy and secure working environment”.

“My department’s role is to ensure that employers and employees adhere to safety standards,” she explained. Workers, she said, should become aware “of potential risk and (ensure that) they are not exposed to workplace hazards”.

She encouraged the employees present to become familiar with OSHP guidelines and policy and work in compliance with the policy procedure, which will help them prevent injury to themselves and others.

Minister of Urban Development, Labour and Electoral matters René Baptiste complimented GECCU for being a leader in the corporate community in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

She feels it is a necessity for employers to follow the example set by GECCU and thinks that “there is no need to wait on the state to take the first step”. Baptiste believes that with an investment such as this, employers would save more revenue in the long term. “You could be wasting electricity because you are not properly following safety procedures,” she advised.

She informed the gathering that at present, the government is revising the OSHP law. “We are pleased to see that our tripartite partners are moving ahead and helping us build public awareness,” she stated.

The minister advised the employees to adhere to notices placed at their office and not be complacent by thinking that nothing would happen to them as there are “always unguarded moments”.

The Minister encouraged workers to report unsafe conditions or practices they think may cause injury or damage to employees or property. “It is an additional responsibility, but one that would save your job,” Baptiste advised.

She said the document was not only made up of health and safety procedures, but has guidelines on how they could help increase productivity.

GECCU Past President Angela Martin handed over the policy document to Minister Baptiste and Patrice Roberts- Samuel. (VM)