‘Formation of Effective Bipartite Safety and Health Committees’; the latest addition to Employers’ Federation of Ceylon’s Training Mix

(LANKAPUVATH | COLOMBO) – The Employers’ Federation of Ceylon (EFC) recently announced the successful launch of the ‘Formation of Effective Safety & Health Committees’ Training Workshop. The workshop aims to guide participants inthe formulation of Bi-Partite OSH committees in compliance with the National Guidelines recently promulgated by the Department of Labour and to equip them with the necessary skills for its effective operations, fostering collaborative efforts to improve occupational safety and health (OSH) in their respective organizations.

The inaugural batch brought together 29 participants from 14 diverse sectors, including hospitality, telecom, and manufacturing industries.

This timely initiative comes at the heels of the recent nationwide rollout of the ‘Guidelines on Bipartite Occupational Safety and Health Committees’by the Ministry of Labour and Foreign Employment. The committee provides a platform for management and union/worker representatives to come together, leveraging their distinct roles, expertise, and experiences to create a culture of safety within organizations.

VajiraEllepola,The Director General/CEO of the Employers’ Federation of Ceylon, expressed his appreciation to all the participants and emphasized the significance of OSH.

“Workplace bi-partite committees will be an important mechanism and the focal point of highlighting the importance of OSH. With ILO recognizing OSH as a fundamental right at work it will be important for Sri Lanka and organizations like ourselves, to take it forward and promote a culture of safety,” Ellepolasaid.

Participants of the inaugural workshopwere exposed to various topics, including effective communication, facilitation and negotiation, and the practical aspects of Bipartite OSH Committees.

Gaya Kariyawasam, Manager of Occupational Safety and Health of the EFC noted that following the workshop the attendees will have a three-month timeframe to implement the key learnings in their respective organizations. This practical application of knowledge acquired during the workshops will enable participants to actively contribute to the improvement of workplace relations and foster a culture of collaboration and mutual respect based on the learning of Better Work’s Master Trainers programme.

YashoraviBakmiwewa, Senior Assistant Director General and Head of Training of the EFC noted that with the launch of the national guidelines of Guidelines on bipartite OSH committees, renewed importance has been given to creating a culture of safety.

“Initiatives like this are a testament to effective collaboration between various stakeholders. We consider this training programme a milestone in our journey towards promoting OSH, which will be the most recent addition to the training mix that EFC offers,” Bakmiwewasaid.

Speaking on the progress made innationalising Bipartite Occupational Safety and Health Committees, KesavaMuraliKanapathyhe Head of the Better Work Programme of Sri Lanka noted that implementation of such an initiativecould be used as a mechanism to promote dialogue and trust, thus enhancing social dialogue at workplaces.

” The inaugural ‘Formation of Effective Safety & Health Committees’ Training Workshop serves as a significant milestone in fostering collaboration and empowering workers and employers to create safe and healthy work environments. Through open dialogue and shared expertise, we can establish a culture of safety that safeguards the well-being of the workforce and promotes sustainable growth. We are excited about the positive impact this workshop will have on enhancing workplace relations and ultimately improving the lives of workers across various sectors.” Kanapathy said.

EFC, BWand other social partners are committed to facilitating ongoing workshops, promoting dialogue, and supporting the development of effective labour-management relationships throughout Sri Lanka. The ‘Formation of Effective Safety & Health Committees’ Training Workshop serves as a foundation for future collaboration and engagement, strengthening the workforce and fostering sustainable economic growth.

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