As in previous EU-OSHA campaigns, ETUCE has recently renewed its status of Official Campaign Partner, and is now taking part in the “Healthy Workplaces – Manage Dangerous Substances 2018-2019 campaign”.

Dangerous substances cause a substantial proportion of occupational diseases, which have a negative impact on workers’ quality of life and ability to work, and in some cases can be fatal.

Despite this, there is a general lack of awareness of the nature and abundance of dangerous substances at work and the risks they pose, and there has been little or no progress in reducing workers’ exposure in recent years. According to the European Survey on Working Conditions, the proportion of workers that report being exposed to chemicals for at least a quarter of their working time has not changed since 2000, remaining at around 17 %. Associated risks cover respiratory diseases (e.g. asthma, rhinitis, asbestosis and silicosis); harm to inner organs, including the brain and the nervous system and occupational cancers.

ETUCE is committed to making the key role of education trade unions visible in promoting decent workplaces in the education sector for a healthier working life and contributes to relevant activities and events with the ETUCE/EFEE OiRA-Online Interactive Risk Assessment project for the education sector. The project will consist of the development and implementation of two OiRA tools: one on early childhood education and other focused on secondary education level. The online tools will be a collection of good practices and policy recommendations, fed with legal insights and research-based information, concluding in a sort of self-assessment test to prevent and raise awareness about a wide range of risks occurred for teachers and educational personnel in schools.

2018-2019 toolkit campaign, the “dangerous substances e-tool” and other promotional material can be downloaded here.