IOSH VP tells ILO conference: 'See safety and health as an investment, not a cost'

08 December 2016

Occupational safety and health professionals have a “leading role to play” in building sustainable organisations across the world, an IOSH Vice-President told a major Asia-Pacific conference.

The 16th Asia and the Pacific Regional Meeting of the ILO, in Bali, Indonesia, between 6-9 December 2016 Photo © Marcel Crozet / ILO

Dr Vincent Ho today (Thursday 8 December) addressed delegates at the 16th Asia and the Pacific Regional Meeting (APRM) of the International Labour Organization (ILO), highlighting IOSH’s work, its support of occupational safety and health initiatives globally and its branch networks in the Asia-Pacific region.

During his address, Vincent spoke of IOSH’s involvement in the drafting of ISO 45001 – the new global standard for occupational safety and health – and its work to improve corporate reporting and develop health and safety skills and competence through free tools like the IOSH Blueprint framework.

Such actions, Vincent said, were part of IOSH’s aim to help drive improvements and ensure that more individuals, businesses and communities benefit from decent, safe, healthy and sustainable work.

Vincent said: “Health and safety professionals have a leading role to play in building safe and healthy workforces, creating sustainable organisations and a sustainable world.

“IOSH believes that leadership, worker engagement and competence are key to improvement and that transparency is absolutely vital for showing what actions organisations are taking to prevent modern slavery, protect human rights and create a ‘race to the top’.

“Highlighting the benefits of good management to national economies, we stress that many of the health challenges, including healthy ageing and extended working lives, are long-term and affected by decisions made today. So, it is important that health and safety management is regarded as an investment and not a cost.”

In conclusion, he added: “In our view, the ‘big global challenges’ – economic, demographic, social, technological and environmental – all rely on socially responsible employers and governments and skilled and effective workers, for their successful resolution.”

It is the first time that IOSH has addressed the ILO’s APRM, which meets around every four years. More than 400 people are expected to take part in proceedings in Bali, Indonesia, between 6-9 December.

Representatives from around 40 countries, including government Ministers and officials, industry and worker representatives and several major non-governmental organisations (NGOs), will discuss issues affecting employment and the world of work in the region.

Conclusions that arise from the meeting will help to shape the national labour and employment policies of the ILO’s Member States, as well as the ILO’s work in the Asia-Pacific region.

Proceedings can be followed online at, or by using the hashtag #ILOAPRM on Twitter.

Caption: The 16th Asia and the Pacific Regional Meeting (APRM) of the International Labour Organization (ILO). Photo © Marcel Crozet / ILO

Notes for editors

The Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) is the world’s leading chartered professional body for people responsible for safety and health in the workplace. We have more than 47,000 members in about 130 countries.

We act as a champion, adviser, advocate and trainer for safety and health professionals working in organisations of all sizes. Our focus is to support our members in their efforts to create workplaces that are safer, healthier and more sustainable.

Our shared objective is a world where work is safe and healthy for every working person, every day. Through our 2017-2022 strategy, ‘WORK 2022 – shaping the future of safety and health’, we will seek to enhance the occupational safety and health profession, build strategic collaborative partnerships across industry and strengthen our influence globally through impactful research and development.

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