Special Reports

Recommendation of the Public Defender Concerning Security at Workplace

According to paragraph “b” of Article 21 of the Organic Law of Georgia on Public Defender of Georgia, the Public Defender addressed the Government of Georgia with a recommendation to initiate ratification of The Labor InspectionConvention (No.81), the Labor Inspection (Agriculture) Convention (No.129), Occupational Safety and HealthConvention (No.155) and Article 3 (Right to Safe and Healthy Working Conditions) of the European Social Charter, in order to ensure protection of one of the main components of the labor rights – right to healthy and safe working environment.

Right to life of an employee that participates in the creation of material wealth is one of the fundamental rights and it should be adequately protected.

Right to labor is not limited to right to employment, fair remuneration and adequate working conditions. Safety at workplace is an inseparable part of the right to labor. This right is protected by a number of legal acts. Unfortunately in Georgia, there is no consecutive State policy regarding labor, health and work environment and therefore, there are no means for monitoring security at workplace.

Since 2007, there has been an alarming growth in the number of injuries and fatal accidents at workplace. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs, in 2010, there were 102 cases of injury and 42 cases of death at workplace. In 2011, the number of injured increased to 137 and number of deaths went up to 54.

It is necessary to perfect the current legislation, in order to ensure work safety in Georgia. Moreover, adequate steps should be taken to create an institution for monitoring safety at workplace (for example a Labor Inspection Agency), which on one hand will ensure maximum safety of working conditions for employees and harmonization of Georgian legislation with the European Union Standards on the other.

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