Both employers and employees should recognise and understand the risks involved in their workplace, as well as the associated safeguards that must be observed.

This plea came this morning from Minister of Labour, Social Security and Human Resource Development, Senator Dr. Esther Byer.

She was delivering opening remarks at the Observation of ILO World Day for Safety and Health at Work, hosted by the Barbados Light and Power Co. Ltd (BL&P) at their Bay Street headquarters.

Dr. Byer advised employers to ensure that workers and their safety and health representatives participated in the development of workplace safety management systems.

???Management should ensure that these systems and policies are aligned with other aspects of business operations, and include the designing of occupational safety and health policies which reflect their commitment to protecting the safety and health of all persons in the workplace,??? the Labour Minister urged.

Referring to the Safety and Health at Work (SHAW) Act, Dr. Byer noted that one way which employees can participate in the general management of safety is by creating and actively participating in a company???s safety and health committee.

She stressed: ???It is well known that where there are active, well-functioning safety and health committees, there is a greater observance of safety rules, lower accident rates and a reduction in the work-related health problems.??? Senator Byer reiterated that all workers should be vigilant and that employees have a duty to take care of each other???s safety.

???Report all unsafe conditions and activities to the employer so that immediate corrective action can be taken. Additionally, it is your responsibility to adhere to those rules and regulations which are necessary to ensure that you and your colleagues can operate safely in the work environment,??? she concluded.

Several multi-media presentations which covered many aspects of safety and health in the workplace were also delivered by representatives from SOL, BL&P, the Massy Group and the Ministry of Labour.

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