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EC consults on future EU health and safety policy framework

The European Commission (EC) has launched a public consultation on the results of the evaluation of the European Strategy on Safety and Health at Work 2007-2012.

The consultation aims to help identify current and future challenges in the occupational safety and health area, and identify solutions to address these challenges.

"Accidents at work are at a historically low level, and the European Union’s occupational safety and health standards are a reference for the rest of the world,” commented László Andor, Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion.

“Investing in occupational safety pays off in terms of improved productivity and staff well-being, reduced absenteeism and staff turnover and greater job satisfaction, especially during the crisis. However, this policy area also faces challenges and together we need to find solutions to address these challenges."

As a basis for the consultation, the EC has published the results of the evaluation of the European Strategy on Safety and Health at Work 2007-2012.

The conclusions of this evaluation confirm the importance of the European dimension of occupational safety and health policy, in particular as regards the positive trend in work accident reduction and the role of the EU strategy in coordinating efforts and providing a common framework for action.

For the future, more still needs to be done, in particular to improve the implementation of occupational safety and health provisions in SMEs and micro-enterprises, to develop more accurate monitoring and evidence gathering tools, to better focus on emerging risks and occupational illness and to effectively tackle the occupational safety and health problems linked to the ageing of the working population.

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