National Workplace Safety Day on 10th May

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

            The Labour Minister emphasized for all sectors to create an awareness for the importance of workplace safety, understanding hazards and following safety guidelines and measures strictly; most importantly, having an awareness for safety at all times. 




Labour Minister General Sirichai Distakil gave a special speech on the occasion of the “10th May, National Workplace Safety Day, which took place at the Department of Labour Protection and Welfare’s building (Taling Chan intersection). In his speech, he spoke about the Kader Industrial (Thailand) Factory fire in Sam Phran sub-district of Nakhon Pathom province 23 years ago, which led to 188 deaths and over 400 injured people. He said that this should be considered as a lesson for workplace safety management as well as ensuring care and protection for workers. The Labour Minister explained that the Ministry of Labour by the Department of Labour Protection and Welfare organizes the National Workplace Safety Day on the 10th May each year to commemorate the event that occurred 23 years ago, and to collectively take part in event to promote safety in the workplace, which contributes to the creation of awareness for its importance for the Thai workforce.

Within the past decade, Thailand has shown evident progress in safety issues. This has included national policies by the Cabinet’s resolution on the 11th December 2007, raising worker’s safety and health as a national agenda in order for all sectors to collaborate on workplace safety operations. Secondly, a national master plan for workplace safety, hygiene and environment (2011 – 2016) was formulated for implementation, with the third measure being the enforcement of the Occupational Safety, Health and Environment Act B.E. 2554 which has created units as a measure to drive efforts, including the Occupational Safety, Health and Environment Fund, and the Thailand Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (public organization).

The government’s policies have aimed for the nation’s stability, prosperity and sustainability, by enhancing competitiveness through the ‘Thailand 4.0’ vision, as well as entry into the ASEAN Community. Workplace safety, regardless of occupation, is considered a crucial factor in consideration of employment by both local and foreign workers, therefore the Labour Minister said that measures would have to be analysed for feasibility of implementation and effectiveness, such as if organizations, employers and employees would become more aware of workplace safety and perceive the human life as more valuable or not. He also said that questions would arise regarding the scope of responsibility of workers, existence of corruption, suitability of legislation and regulations, enforcement of legislation and level of integration between government units in the form of a civil state. Furthermore, he spoke about how foreign countries could be confident in Thailand’s ability to protect their people working in the Kingdom. The Labour Minister said that such questions should be able to be answered, where the Prime Minister has given great importance to the government’s role in promoting a culture of safety in order to drive the nation towards ‘Safety Thailand’. The Ministry of Labour will remain responsible in ensuring employment of Thai people with good income, having access to development towards a skilled workforce and ensuring protection and safety at work, eliminating losses caused by carelessness and failure to follow regulations. The Ministry of Labour must not allow obstacles from stopping the Ministry’s cycle of work, where it must drive the people to be protected by social security and safety, ensuring welfare of workers is primary. The Labour Minister said that he has given importance to such issues greatly since being appointed as Minister of Labour, in terms of inspections, legal enforcement and campaigns to raise awareness of safety. In doing so, the “90 Day Operations to Reduce Dangers” project was launched, whereby statistics of accidents have significantly decreased when compared to the same time period in the year before. He said that in entering the AEC, the reduced statistics of occupational injuries may not be accepted by neighbouring countries or internationally, therefore safety standards have been raised to international standards through the ratification of ILO Convention Number 187 concerning the promotional framework for occupational health and safety, 2006, which took place on 23rd March 2016.

In 2016, the Ministry of Labour has determined measures and practices to enhance performance and concrete achievements, whereby setting the ultimate goal of 100 percent safety in the workplace. Practices concerning occupational safety and health standards will adhere to the ILO Convention Number 187, which will push the second phase of the national agenda on workplace safety and health (2017 – 2026). There has also been a drive for the second national master plan on safety (2017 – 2564) to achieve the integration of relevant authorities and continuity in practice. Furthermore, there must also be the creation of awareness to employers and employees by continuing to build knowledge and create processes to achieve compliance with safety and hygiene habits, leading to a culture of safety, and using proactive measures to reduce to rate of workplace injuries through collaboration with enterprises and organizations under the civil state mechanism. This will drive plans, monitor and track compliance with legal guidelines and ensure accuracy, whereby focusing on enforcement of safety laws. There will be thorough inspections within high-risk establishments for workplace accidents and illnesses, as well as taking a proactive checking approach on risks prior to accidents occurring. Increased cooperation on occupational health and safety will also be established within national, regional and international networks, to which the Ministry of Labour has collaborated with ASEAN, Singapore, Korea and China. Especially in ASEAN, Thailand has been assigned as a centre for information on occupational health and safety. This year, the Ministry of Labour will join with 4 other ministries including the Ministry of Interior, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives, the Ministry of Public Health and the Ministry of Industry, in the implementation of the ‘Safety Thailand’ project to reduce the loss of lives, injuries and properties. The target has been set to cover all sectors of the country. The Labour Minister emphasized that everything mentioned will not be able to succeed if there is no collaboration from all sectors, particularly those relevant to the matters. Furthermore, he said that all sectors would have to recognize the importance of workplace safety, understanding potential harms and following safety guidelines. Most importantly, everyone must have an awareness for safety. The Labour Minister commended agencies which have cooperated in driving the articles of the national agenda on occupational safety and health, and thanked all who have come together to push for safety at work and to prevent losses from occurring to the next person, organization and the overall national economy.

Organizations/enterprises which received certification for contributions to workplace safety in 2016, continuously supporting annual fire drills for the Office of Workplace Safety and the Department of Labour Protection and Welfare went to CP All PCL, Chaiphaya Hospital, Bang Khun Non Fire Station and the Taling Chan Police Station. Organizations/enterprises consistently providing support on safety in construction, in the construction project for mass transportation in Bangkok and surrounding areas included the Mass Rapid Transit Authority of Thailand (MRTA) and the State Railway of Thailand (SRT). Organizations/enterprises which have driven projects for safety in educational institutions under the “Safety and Hygiene in Schools” project since 2014 to present included the Private Vocational Education Venter, the Office of the Vocational Education Commission, the Office of the Permanent Secretary of Education, the Office of the Private Education Commission, the Office of the Basic Education Commission, the Office of the Non-formal and Informal Education, the Bureau of Student Development, the Office of the Higher Education Commission, the Centre for Development, Promotion and Coordination of Student and Special Affairs of the Vocational Educational Commission, Exedy Friction Material Co., Ltd. And the Office of Corporate Sustainability from Chareon Pokphand Group. Organizations/enterprises which have promoted activities in creating awareness and workplace safety for communities, educational institutions and workplaces included IRPC Co., Ltd. in the IRPC oil warehouse in Nakhon Si Ayutthaya, the Rayong Workplace Security Association by Eiamheng Tapioca Starch Industry Co., Ltd. in Nakhon Ratchasima, Udon Auto Glass Co., Ltd. in Udon Thani, the Safety Officer Association in Lampang by PTT PCL, the petroleum warehouse in Nakhon Sawan, Sahaviriya Steel Industries PLC, the Southern Workplace Safety Officer Association on the “Public Safety Wave” radio show on FM 98 megahertz in Songkhla, Siam Steel Service Center PCL in Samut Prakarn, the Ratchapruek Security Network Club, the Phra Nakhon Safety Officers Club and the Safety and Health at Work Promotion Association (Thailand). Organizations/enterprises which supported and cooperated on prevention of injuries at work and fire blazes, considered a good role model to the public, included Major Cineplex Group Co., Ltd.


Bureau of Public Relations

10 May 2016

Kantipon Kusmit – News Photos