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Author: savemalaysia   |   Latest post: Sat, 23 Oct 2021, 7:59 PM

 

Lam Thye: New occupational safety and health master plan much improved from previous version

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KUALA LUMPUR: The Occupational Safety and Health Master Plan 2021-2025 (OSHMP25) unveiled yesterday was a much-improved version compared to the previous one.

Alliance for Safe Community chairman Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye said this was because it took into account several factors that had changed our way of life since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.

He said there was a common fallacy that occupational safety and health were issues of concern only for those at workplaces and during working hours.

"OSH, as its acronym, has other far-reaching consequences as well, affecting productivity, the lives of workers' dependents, the economic costs of delayed work, increased insurance and other costs, and its impact on public health services. 

"This means OSH has long-term implications along the value chain.

"The consequences of neglect in occupational safety and health have ramifications for society as a whole.

"As such, it is a welcome news that the government has rolled out the long-awaited OSH master plan, which is a much-improved version compared to the previous master plan," he said in a statement.

On changes to the way of life following the pandemic, Lee said the significant changes would be the fact that almost all homes, cafes, and restaurants had been transformed into workspaces.

"And so, OSH is all-pervasive."

Lee said since one of the emphases in the master plan would be on the civil service and the government sector, this sector would have to show greater commitment in ensuring compliance with rules and regulations regarding safety and health.

"The public sector must set the example. It must show leadership by example."

"(Also), owners of small and medium-scale industries must embrace all aspects of the OSH master plan as they form the backbone of the nation's economy.

"In this respect, there is no substitute for self-regulation. Following safe and tested practices begins with the individual, both at home, and in our workplaces. We must set our house in order first," he added.

Lee said self-regulation also required acquiring adequate knowledge of the principles and practices of health and safety.

"This is where education plays an important role. Perhaps the Education Ministry can consider including some universal principles in the school curriculum to inculcate safety and health consciousness at an early age."

Lee said to encourage small-medium enterprises and small and medium-sized industries to embrace self-regulation, the government should allow companies to use their Human Resources Development Fund (HRDF) contributions to implement self-regulation.

"(And) then there is the question of empowerment. Factory owners must empower key employees to be the eyes and ears of the company to ensure standard operating procedures for OSH are complied with.

"Needless to say, this OSH master plan will only work if there is full commitment from all the parties concerned. Only then can we hope to see zero accidents at the workplace."

Yesterday, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob had launched the OSHMP25, which outlined various strategic core values to drive the formation of safe and healthy work culture and to raise the Malaysian well-being index.

He had said the medium-term master plan for five years would improve the level of safety and health at the workplace by reducing the rate of accidents, deaths, and disease infection which would help the government enhanced the people's well-being.

 

https://www.nst.com.my/news/nation/2021/10/736544/lam-thye-new-occupational-safety-and-health-master-plan-much-improved

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