Safer and healthier work
Safer and healthier work at any age – Provision of services in respect of occupational safety and health (OSH) in the context of an ageing workforce
Demography in the EU is changing with an ageing population and the need to extend working life for socio-economic reasons. Within the context of OSH it is clear that maintaining the health and safety of all workers including older workers is vital.
The overall objective of this project for the European Agency for Health and Safety at Work (EU-OSHA) was to help inform policy development in the area of Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) and ageing workers, as well as in the area of return-to-work/rehabilitation, improve knowledge concerning current policies, strategies, programmes, instruments and practice and provide an analysis and policy options, and support the sharing of experience and practice by providing examples of successful and innovative practice and the views of stakeholders. This will close knowledge gaps and inform possible policy responses.
The project was articulated in three phases. The first phase, from June 2013 to January 2014, focused on the review of the issues and investigation of the policy and practice on OSH and older workers in Europe. This phase aimed at reviewing various issues regarding OSH, older workers and the issue of the rehabilitation of sick/injured workers and investigating policy and practice in the EU and Member states.
It covered reviews of:
1. the existing information regarding OSH and an ageing workforce and rehabilitation;
2. OSH policies, strategies, programmes and actions for an ageing workforce in the 27 Member States, candidate countries, EFTA countries, at EU-level and at international-level;
3. strategy and actions in the European Union and member states regarding return-to-work/rehabilitation of sick/injured workers;
4. workplace practices and support for enterprises, including, experiences and activities.
The second phase, from January 2014 to June 2014, involved a number of activities (e.g. interviews and workshops) to obtain the views of national intermediary stakeholders involved in OSH issues on the drivers, obstacles and needs related to policy for OSH and older workers as well as return-to-work/rehabilitation in their country. It also involved group interviews with workplace actors (employers, employees, OSH representatives, etc.) to discuss about practices on the ground and the needs of workplaces in this area. There was a specific focus on Micro and Small Enterprises.
The third phase, from June 2014 to June 2015, consisted of a final analysis and support to a final seminar. It aimed at the production of a policy-focused report compiling and analysing the results from Phases 1 & 2 and providing conclusions and policy options based on these results. It also included support to a final conference to present the results of the work.