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PRESS RELEASE 27th May 2005 at 11 a.m.

Safety at workplace is important

Safety at workplace is one of the main themes in WorldSkills 2005 Helsinki Competition. Great attention is paid to the safety of the workshop stands as safety is part of the evaluation criteria. 

Improvements could be made especially concerning the work safety of young people. Most injuries occur during the first working year and the working habits and attitudes adopted at the beginning of carrier are proved to be fairly permanent. Finnish Institute of Occupational Health arranges an international Symposium of Youth and Work Culture 2005 in Hanasaari Culture Centre in Espoo on 30-31 May 2005.

The objective of the symposium is to unite experts, trainers and representatives of business life to discuss how the importance of work safety could be emphasised already at school. In practise the aim is to create a culture where the aspect of work safety is highly visible and the youngsters would see the work safety as important and positive factor.

Delegates from 14 different countries will attend the meeting. In addition to European countries, representatives will arrive from USA, Brazil, Australia and Thailand. The aim is to export knowledge abroad and to exchange information on practises used in different countries.

In addition to the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health the project is supported by World Health Organization WHO and International Labour Organization ILO.
The programme co-ordinator of Youth and Work project Timo Leino sees that the best way to learn matters related to work safety is by doing. “First the matters are discussed and then they are put into practise. The kind of method where a person is asked to look everything from the net does not work. In practise this is similar to a situation where a child crosses a street: firs you look to the right and then to the left. It is important to act according to specific regulations to make things work.”

One of the most important factors to be developed is the training of teachers. Teachers need more training in work safety and more material for their teaching. According to Mr Leino work safety in vocational education has been taken into consideration quite well but for example at universities the matter is not considered enough. Therefore the students graduating to become managers do not know that much about work safety.

Mr Leino hopes that work safety could be seen as a positive thing. “Having  the right attitude towards work safety is the most important thing! The objective is to learn to work calmly, smartly and efficiently and at the same time take care of work safety.”

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Updated 28.5.2005  © 2004 Skills Finland ry

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