Awards given for good practices in workplace health and safety

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In December 2000, the Hellenic Institute of Occupational Health and Safety (ELINYAE), presented awards to Greek enterprises with outstanding practices in the fields of combating workplace stress and musculoskeletal complaints and replacing dangerous chemical substances. The awards ceremony gave the social partners and government an opportunity to outline their policies in this area.

On 4 December 2000, the Hellenic Institute of Occupational Health and Safety (ELINYAE), upon completion of a programme entitled "2000 Enterprise Awards - good practices in the workplace", held an official public event, where it presented awards and honourable mentions to enterprises with outstanding practices in the fields of combating workplace stress and musculoskeletal complaints and replacing dangerous chemical substances. Present at the awards ceremony were representatives of the government, trade unions and employers' organisations.

ELINYAE is a jointly managed body set up in 1991 by agreement between the central social partner organisations, funded out of employers' contributions for vocational training. It began work in 1993, with the main objectives of improving Greek legislation on health and safety at work, harmonising it with EU legislation and implementing it effectively (GR9703107F).

The chair of the ELINYAE administrative board opened the ceremony by referring to the important role that ELINYAE is being called on to play in promoting workers' health and safety in Greece's new competitive environment. On the government's part, the Minister of Labour and Social Security stressed that in future successful businesses will be those that boost workers' morale and offer them incentives to improve product quality and productivity, and at the same time give them a sense of security about their future. The president of the Greek General Confederation of Labour (GSEE) said that workplace health and safety is a goal that unites the social partners. From the employers' side, the vice president of the General Confederation of Greek Small Businesses and Trades (GSEVEE) referred to the importance of health and safety in small and medium-sized enterprises, and the president of the Federation of Greek Industries (SEV), after congratulating ELINYAE on its initiative, stressed that ensuring a work organisation that incorporates health and safety is a basic task of the enterprise itself.

TITAN Cement Industry SA presented its workplace health and safety programme at the event. This includes a proposal for the implementation of an accident-prevention course in schools, beginning with Achaia prefecture. Finally, the six award-winning enterprises presented the good practices they have applied in the workplace, thus helping to improve the working environment. The enterprises that received awards in relation to workplace stress were the Ioannina Municipal Water Supply Company and the Naoussa Spinning Mill. Awards in relation to musculoskeletal complaints were given to the Rio-Antirrio Bridge Joint Venture and FANCO SA, and in relation to dangerous chemical substances to Heracles Cement Company SA and Siemens Tele Industrie AG.

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