Seoul Declaration on Safety and Health at Work
The Safety and Health Summit
Having met in Seoul, Republic of Korea, on 29 June 2008 on the occasion of the XVIII World Congress on Safety and Health at Work, jointly organized
by the International Labour Office, the International Social Security Association (ISSA) and the Korea Occupational Safety and Health Agency (KOSHA),
with the participation of senior professionals, employers' and workers' representatives, social security representatives, policy-makers and administrators.
Recognizing the serious consequences of work-related accidents and diseases, which the International Labour Office estimates lead to 2.3 million fatalities
per year world-wide and an economic loss of 4 percent of global Gross Domestic Product (GDP),
Recognizing that improving safety and health at work has a positive impact on working conditions, productivity and economic and social development,
Recalling that the right to a safe and healthy working environment should be recognized as a fundamental human right and that globalization must go
hand in hand with preventative measures to ensure the safety and health of all at work,
Recognizing the importance of the instruments on safety and health at work of the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the substantial role of the
ISSA and its members' contribution in implementing these instruments,
Recalling that the promotion of occupational safety and health and the prevention of accidents and diseases at work is a core element of the ILO's
founding mission and of the Decent Work Agenda,
Recalling that the prevention of occupational risks and the promotion of workers' health constitute an essential part of the ISSA's mandate and of its
Conceptual Framework of Dynamic Social Security,
Recognizing the importance of education, training, consultation and the exchange of information and good practices on prevention and the promotion of
Recognizing the important role played by governments and the social partners, professional safety and health organizations and social security institutions
in promoting prevention and in providing treatment, support and rehabilitation services,
Recognizing the importance of cooperation among international organizations and institutions,
Welcoming progress achieved through international and national efforts to improve safety and health at work,
1. Promoting high levels of safety and health at work is the responsibility of society as a whole and all members of society must contribute to
achieving this goal by ensuring that priority is given to occupational safety and health in national agendas and by building and maintaining a
national preventative safety and health culture.
2. A national preventative safety and health culture is one in which the right to a safe and healthy working environment is respected at all levels,
where governments, employers and workers actively participate in securing a safe and healthy working environment through a system of defined
rights, responsibilities and duties, and where the principle of prevention is accorded the highest priority.
3. The continuous improvement of occupational safety and health should be promoted by a systems approach to the management of occupational
safety and health, including the development of a national policy taking into consideration the principles in Part II of the ILO Occupational Safety
and Health Convention, 1981 (No. 155).
4. Governments should
پœConsider the ratification of the ILO Promotional Framework for Occupational Safety and Health Convention, 2006 (No. 187) as a priority, as well
as other relevant ILO Conventions on safety and health at work and ensure the implementation of their provisions, as a means to improve
national performance on safety and health at work in a systematic way.
پœEnsure that continued actions are taken to create and enhance a national preventative safety and health culture.
پœEnsure that the occupational safety and health of workers is protected through an adequate and appropriate system of enforcement of safety and
health standards, including a strong and effective labour inspection system.
5. Employers should ensure that
پœPrevention is an integral part of their activities, as high safety and health standards at work go hand and hand with good business performance.
پœOccupational safety and health management systems are established in an effective way to improve workplace safety and health.
پœWorkers and their representatives are consulted, trained, informed and involved in all measures related to their safety and health at work.
6. Affirming the workers' right to a safe and healthy working environment, workers should be consulted on safety and health matters and should:
پœFollow safety and health instructions and procedures, including on the use of personal protective equipment.
پœParticipate in safety and health training and awareness-raising activities.
پœCooperate with their employer in measures related to their safety and health at work.
7. The World Congress on Safety and Health at Work is an ideal forum to share knowledge and experiences in achieving safe, healthy and
8. Progress made on achieving safety and health at work should be reviewed on the occasion of the XIX World Congress on Safety and Health at
Work in 2011.
9. The Summit participants commit to taking the lead in promoting a preventative safety and health culture, placing occupational safety and health
high on national agendas.