IOSH Launches Lif€ Savings Ireland Campaign

"Our government has been seeking to make the case that good health and safety represents good business, and I think IOSH's initiative illustrates that very vividly," said Richard Bruton, Ireland's minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation.

The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health, IOSH, launched its Lif€ Savings Ireland campaign at Dublin Castle on Feb. 12, bidding to help Irish employers beef up their safety programs. "Businesses are missing the obvious with health and safety. When you operate in a global marketplace, and you're trying to stay competitive, a happy, healthy workforce is a driver for growth," IOSH Ireland Branch Chair Michelle Peate-Morgan said. "It's wrong for ministers and business leaders to talk about health and safety as 'red tape' and a burden on business. When done properly and proportionately, health and safety is essential to a business's long-term prospects for survival in our economy."

"As well as the primary aim of saving people's lives and livelihoods, good occupational health and safety can also deliver vital cost savings and help a business to grow," she added.

The campaign aims to help businesses get the most out of their health and safety management, help IOSH members working in Irish organizations get the most out of their budgets and cut corporate spending, and to have Ireland's government take action.

According to IOSH, the Irish economy is losing €3.2 billion ($5.3 billion in U.S. dollars) per year and the cost of health and safety failures per worker in Ireland is €1,711 ($2,856) because of workplace injuries and illnesses, which are resulting in a million lost working days per year.

"Our government has been seeking to make the case that good health and safety represents good business, and I think IOSH's initiative illustrates that very vividly," said Richard Bruton, Ireland's minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation. "There's the capacity to save €3.2 billion to Irish businesses if they apply sensible rules throughout their organization, so IOSH's campaign falls in line with what we are seeking Irish business to do."

IOSH cites the example of Cork-based Janssen Pharmaceutical, part of Johnson & Johnson, which it reports "saved €2 million in addition to reducing safety risk to employees during the upgrade of the company's powder handling facility. Design improvements resulted in a significantly reduced risk of ergonomic issues, superior manual handling facilities, the elimination of cleaning at heights, and changes in the assembly and disassembly of heavy equipment."

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