European Trade Union Institute, ETUI.

Accueil > Topics > Health & Safety - working conditions

Health & Safety - working conditions

23% of European workers believe that their safety or their health is at risk because of their work – a figure which shows that working conditions in Europe are not improving. And even though manufacturing employment across Europe is shrinking and losing ground to service jobs, exposure to traditional physical hazards - noise, dangerous goods, heavy lifting, etc. – has not gone away. In this section we monitor latest news and highlight our research activities on working conditions and occupational health and safety.

News

Pesticides: European Commission accused of keeping hazardous products on the European market

10 May 2019
agriculture

Senior European Commission officials have been working to water down the criteria used for defining endocrine disruptors and to promote the continuing existence of dangerous pesticides on the European market. This is revealed in more than 600 confidential documents obtained by the NGO Pesticide Action Network (PAN) after two years of legal proceedings before the Court of Justice of the European Union.

France: a link between working conditions and suicides

23 April 2019
carte des suicides au travail

A study published in the Bulletin épidémiologique hebdomadaire (BEH) – a weekly epidemiological bulletin – of the French public health agency helps us to better gauge the impact of working conditions on thoughts of suicide. In 2017, 3.8% of the French population in employment stated having considered suicide in the course of the past twelve months (4.5% of the female population and 3.1% of the male population).

A guide on detoxifying workplaces

18 April 2019

The US Center for Progressive Reform (CPR) has just published its new Guide to Securing a Nontoxic Work Environment.

Vietnam bans glyphosate

15 April 2019
Photo by Jack Young on Unsplash

Vietnam has decided to ban all herbicides containing glyphosate. This is a further blow to Roundup, a key product of Monsanto, the US multinational now in the hands of agrochemical giant Bayer.

United States: Bayer-Monsanto sentenced to pay more than $80 million in damages to a glyphosate victim

2 April 2019

On 27 March, a federal US court in San Francisco (California) sentenced Bayer-Monsanto to pay more than $80 million in damages to Edwin Hardeman. The jury’s verdict was unanimous. The amount corresponds to compensation of more than $5 million in past and future non-economic loss damages, and $75 million in punitive damages for Monsanto’s grave negligence. The jury not only condemned the lack of information, but also highlighted the causal link between the cancer and the pesticide, considering that the latter had been a substantial factor causing the disease. The jurors were in no doubt that Monsanto had been aware of the risk and had deliberately decided not to inform customers.

The CJEU condemns the European Food Safety Agency’s lack of transparency in the glyphosate case

26 March 2019

On 7 March, the Court of Justice of the European Union annulled the decisions of the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA) refusing access to toxicity and carcinogenicity studies on the active substance glyphosate in the context of the European regulatory system governing pesticides (“phytopharmaceuticals”).

The CJEU annuls the authorisation granted by the Commission on the marketing of carcinogens

26 March 2019

On 7 March, the Court of Justice of the European Union annulled the authorisation granted by the European Commission to market lead chromates, stating that plenty of alternatives to these carcinogens were available.

Plastic – a human health crisis

21 February 2019
AdobeStock_230500231

A recent report from a coalition of NGOs lead by the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL) reveals that plastic is a human health crisis hiding in plain sight. To date, research into the human health impacts of plastic have focused narrowly on specific moments in the plastic lifecycle, often on single products, processes, or exposure pathways. This approach fails to recognize that significant, complex, and intersecting human health impacts occur at every stage of the plastic lifecycle: from extraction of fossil fuels, to consumer use, to disposal and beyond. According to the report, uncertainties and knowledge gaps often impede regulation and the ability of workers, consumers and policymakers to make informed decisions. However, the full scale of health impacts throughout plastic’s lifecycle are overwhelming and warrant a precautionary approach.

Events

Related publications