ILO adds safety and health as a fundamental principle and right at work

Delegates attending the International Labour Conference (ILC) adopted a resolution to add the principle of a safe and healthy working environment to the International Labour Organization’s (ILO) Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work. The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) welcomes this major breakthrough in occupational safety and health for workers.

Credits: ILO

The 10 June decision adds the right to a healthy and safe working environment to the four rights adopted in 1998 by the International Labour Organization (ILO):

  • Freedom of association and the effective recognition of the right to collective bargaining.

  • The elimination of forced or compulsory labour.

  • The abolition of child labour.

  • The elimination of discrimination in respect of employment and occupation.

Under the 1998 declaration, all 187 ILO member states, regardless of their level of economic development, committed to the agreed principles and rights.    

With this new announcement, ILO member states will be obliged to promote and respect safe working environments even when they haven’t ratified the relevant Conventions, benefiting millions of workers all over the world.

Almost three million people die each year from work-related causes, the UN agency said.

The adoption of the inclusion of a safe & healthy working environment in the ILO’s framework of fundamental principles & rights at work is an important step to prevent these unacceptable losses,” the ILO said on social media.

IFJ General Secretary, Anthony Bellanger, said: “The IFJ welcomes this historical decision that converts workers’ health and safety in to a fundamental right ILO member states must respect and promote. Media workers are particularly vulnerable to unsafe working environments, and we hope that this decision will be an important step towards ending the growing attacks on journalists while doing their job”.

For more information, please contact IFJ on +32 2 235 22 16

The IFJ represents more than 600,000 journalists in 146 countries

Follow the IFJ on TwitterFacebook and Instagram

Subscribe to IFJ News