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Director's Corner

Short profile of Dr Christa Sedlatschek

The EU-OSHA’s Founding Regulation states that the Agency shall be headed by a Director, appointed by the Governing Board on a proposal from the Commission for a period of five years, which shall be renewable.
 
Dr. Christa Sedlatschek was appointed as Director in 2011.
 

Picture of Dr Christa SedlatschekDr Christa Sedlatschek is a medical doctor (University of Vienna) and a specialist in occupational health.

The Director is the legal representative and is responsible for the management and day-to-day running of the Agency, including all financial, administrative and personnel matters. The post is for a term of five years, renewable once, and the Director is accountable to the Governing Board

After completing her studies she started working in the Austrian labour inspectorate and moved to the Ministry for Labour and Social Affairs in 1993, taking over the function as Deputy Head of the department for occupational medicine.

In 1998 she was recruited by EU-OSHA where she focused on the development and dissemination of good practice information, becoming the head of the working environment unit. During that time she gained an in-depth knowledge about the EU and existing occupational safety and health (OSH) systems in the Member States.

In 2003 she moved to Berlin and started working in the Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (Bundesanstalt für Arbeitsschutz und Arbeitsmedizin - BAuA), where she became Director of the national “Initiative New Quality of Work - INQA” in 2004.

“INQA” was launched by the German Federal Ministry for labour and social affairs as a consequence of the Lisbon Summit in 2000, aiming at making a contribution towards creating more and better jobs in Europe.

 

OSH Blog

blog_logo-def.jpgThe aim of this blog is to bring you news about developments in occupational safety and health across the EU and beyond, and also about EU-OSHA initiatives and activities to fulfill our mission.
We are one of the smallest EU agencies and cannot promise to reply to every comment, but we will read them and bear them in mind to shape our future work. The blog content is available only in English.

European Neighbourhood Policy Project

European Neighbourhood Policy Project

by James Sumner at Apr 03, 2014 12:00 AM |

Since February 2014, EU-OSHA has been working on a project funded under the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP). The project will run until January 2016 and aims to involve ENP partner countries in the work of the Agency by establishing a single contact point in each country to provide a platform for sharing information with the local safety and health network.

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Putting OiRA at the centre of risk prevention strategies

Putting OiRA at the centre of risk prevention strategies

by the OiRA team at Feb 19, 2014 03:00 AM |

Several new OiRA tools were published in 2013 with support from EU-OSHA. This takes the total number of tools available to 15. But more importantly, there is now an OiRA community actively working together across Europe to make risk prevention easier. And the outlook for this year is even more promising, with around 50 more tools under development.

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Guidance for competence in tower crane examinations

Guidance for competence in tower crane examinations

by Tim Tregenza at Feb 14, 2014 12:00 AM |
Filed under: construction

The Consolidated Use of Work Equipment Directive 2009/104/EC requires tower and mobile cranes to be examined to detect actual and potential defects and weaknesses, and for such to be reported and acted upon so as to ensure safe crane operation. This requires an examiner who is both competent and impartial to carry out the examination. 

Guidance has been developed by a tripartite working group with representation from employees, employers and governments. The purpose of this guidance is to advise on appropriate minimum standards to ensure the competence (and impartiality) of persons carrying-out periodic and assembly examinations of tower and mobile cranes. 

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A global framework for safety, health and security for work-related international travel

A global framework for safety, health and security for work-related international travel

by Tim Tregenza at Jan 31, 2014 12:00 AM |
Filed under: cww | csr

The Global Framework: Safety, health and security for work-related international travel and assignments was released by The International SOS Foundation following a Meeting of International Experts held last year. 

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Awarded! Social Partnership Alliance for Health and Safety in Hamburg

Awarded! Social Partnership Alliance for Health and Safety in Hamburg

by Dietmar Elsler at Nov 26, 2013 12:00 AM |

On Thursday 24 October 2013, during the European Week for Safety and Health at Work, the Hamburg OSH Partnership held an event to celebrate its winning of a European Good Practice Award 2013 and to further promote the campaign of “Working together for risk prevention”.

Following their success in the national and European Good Practice competitions, the European Award has been handed over to the Hamburg OSH Partnership by European Commissioner Lázló Andor and EU-OSHA Director Christa Sedlatschek in the European Award Ceremony in Dublin in April this year. The event in Hamburg has been organised in order to recognise all national partners in a decent ceremony and further stimulate the exchange of good practices.

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Belgian Focal Point’s Healthy Workplaces Campaign 2012-13 Symposium, Brussels 21 October 2013

Belgian Focal Point’s Healthy Workplaces Campaign 2012-13 Symposium, Brussels 21 October 2013

by James Sumner at Oct 28, 2013 12:00 AM |
Filed under: Campaign 2012-13

On Monday 21 October 2013, at the start of the European Week for Safety and Health at Work, the Belgian Focal Point held an event to mark the 2012-13 Campaign - Working Together for Risk Prevention. The conference was held in the Ministry for Employment, Work and Social dialogue in Brussels and was great way to recognise all the work that went into delivering the campaign, not only in Belgium, but also in the neighbouring Netherlands and Luxembourg.

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Four Agencies Seminar – EU-OSHA in the European Parliament

Four Agencies Seminar – EU-OSHA in the European Parliament

by James Sumner at Oct 03, 2013 12:00 AM |

On the morning of Wednesday 25 September 2013, after many months of planning, the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) joined three other agencies in the European Parliament in Brussels to highlight the work we are doing to help make Europe a safer, healthier and more productive place to work.

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Health and safety and well-being at work in the “Land of Thousand Lakes”

Health and safety and well-being at work in the “Land of Thousand Lakes”

by Katalin Sas at Sep 30, 2013 12:00 AM |

On 26-28 August, Helsinki hosted the international conference on ”Work, Well-being and Wealth – Active Ageing at Work”.

The aim of the conference was to bring together researchers, experts and European networks in the field, and to present and discuss the major issues related to the ageing of the working population and its consequences for the workplaces and society, identifying research needs and solutions. The conference dealt with topics such as work ability, disability prevention, return to work, exploring the different aspects of the extension of working life. The conference programme included among others sessions on psychosocial factors supporting participation in working life, on the management of competencies for sustainable work, and on disability prevention and reintegration.

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A case-by-case approach to well-being at work

A case-by-case approach to well-being at work

by Dr Christa Sedlatschek at Jul 04, 2013 12:00 AM |

Improving well-being at work can be achieved in a variety of different ways, and our case studies provide excellent examples of this. Focusing on the practical ways in which organisations have promoted well-being at work, the case studies demonstrate that each approach is unique and context specific. A standard approach is not possible, partly because every organisation is different, each with its own requirements, but also because there is no agreed definition of ‘well-being at work’.

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Looking back, looking forward

Looking back, looking forward

by Dr Christa Sedlatschek at Jun 18, 2013 12:00 AM |

These are interesting times for occupational safety and health in Europe. When organisations of all sizes are questioning its value, and when budgets for health and safety are coming under pressure, in some of the biggest institutions in the EU, as well as the smallest.

We at the Agency have been part of this process. With our annual report for 2012 we have been looking back at our achievements over the last year, but we have also been looking forward, and thinking about what we are likely to face in the years ahead. We are starting to develop a new strategic programme for our work, as we face up to new challenges in workplace safety and health.
Challenges like the increasing number of older workers in Europe, and the implications for occupational safety and health (OSH).

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Practical tools to run an OSH campaign -  Spreading the OSH message

Practical tools to run an OSH campaign - Spreading the OSH message

by Heike Klempa, Campaigns Manager at May 29, 2013 12:00 AM |

In our mission to raise awareness of occupational safety and health (OSH) matters, we have run a variety of communication campaigns over the years, using a mix of different methods and communication techniques. This experience has shown us that a well-planned and targeted campaign can work wonders in changing how people think and act regarding health and safety at work.

We believe that any organisation, no matter the size, can run a campaign to publicise an OSH topic that affects them.

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ICT systems and labour inspection

ICT systems and labour inspection

by Tim Tregenza at May 24, 2013 12:00 AM |

Information and communications technology makes the modern world go round. Working without mobile communications and the internet is now inconcievable. At the thematic day of the 64th meeting of the Senior Labour Inspectors' Committee (SLIC), the role of ICT systems in labour inspection was under discussion.

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Lithuania in the limelight with the upcoming presidency

Lithuania in the limelight with the upcoming presidency

by Tim Tregenza at May 24, 2013 12:00 AM |

The Republic of Lithuania assumes the Presidency of the Council of the European Union on 1 July 2013, and to mark this the Director of EU-OSHA, Dr Christa Sedlatschek, visited Vilnius on 14 May to meet with Mrs Algimanta Pabedinskiene, Minister of  Social Security and Labour of the Republic of Lithuania and the main stakeholders in the Lithuanian health and safety system. 

 

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European cooperation in crane safety

European cooperation in crane safety

by Tim Tregenza at May 17, 2013 12:00 AM |

Across the European Union, there is a huge amount of expertise in occupational safety and health, and sharing this knowledge is a cost-effective approach towards better worker protection in Europe. 

On Wednesday, 8th May 2013, the Malta Occupational Health and Safety Authority in collaboration with the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work organized a half-day seminar on Crane Erection and Examination at the Grand Hotel Excelsior, Floriana.  This seminar mainly targeted owners, erectors and examiners of cranes.  Ing. Joachim Schulz, member of DGUV Expert Committee Construction Industry of Germany was the main speaker in this seminar.

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ANSES: key national information provider visits EU-OSHA

ANSES: key national information provider visits EU-OSHA

by Tim Tregenza at May 07, 2013 12:00 AM |

The French Agency for Food, Environmental and Occupational Safety and Health (L’Agence nationale de sécurité sanitaire de l’alimentation, de l’environnement et du travail), or ANSES was created in 2010 with the merger of the French Food Safety Agency (AFSSA) and the French Agency for Environmental and Occupational Health Safety (AFSSET)). This merger means that ANSES presents an interesting cross-cutting approach to health topics, with all types of exposure to potential hazards and risks being considered, whether that exposure comes from work, leisure activities, travel, or even food. 

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The sun did not shine but the welcome was warm!

The sun did not shine but the welcome was warm!

by Dr Christa Sedlatschek at May 07, 2013 12:00 AM |

It is always a pleasure to welcome Members of the European Parliament to visit our Bilbao headquarters.  On 2 and 3 May, we were delighted to have three MEPs with us for a study visit.  Two of them – Edith Bauer (EPP, Slovakia) and Jutta Steinruck (S & D, Germany) were return visitors.  For the very first time, they were accompanied by the Chair of the European Parliament’s Employment and Social Affairs Committee, Pervenche Berès (S & D) from France.  The study visit was packed with presentations, interspersed with stimulating debate.  We took the opportunity to present our flagship projects such as the ESENER survey, the Online Interactive Risk Assessment tool (OiRA), our campaigns and selected projects such as the development of the business case for occupational health and safety and the future of green jobs.  In particular, we were delighted to have the opportunity to present them with a first overview of plans for the big Older Workers’ project, which will run for two years and which is included in our work programme exactly because of direct action by the European Parliament to fund a pilot project in this area.  We got interesting advice from the MEPs on what they needed in their daily work and we were able to fine-tune some of our plans, particularly in the area of Older Workers, to meet these needs. 

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Macedonia looks strategically

Macedonia looks strategically

by Tim Tregenza at Apr 25, 2013 12:00 AM |

Mavroro, a beautiful town in the Macedonian mountains, hosted the International Conference on National OSH Strategies during the 25-28 April 2013. The conference, organised by the Macedonian Occupational Safety and Health Association, was supported by EU-OSHA, the Macedonian Ministry of Labour and Social Policy, the Macedonian State Labour Inspectorate, the Federation of Trade Unions of Macedonia, the Confederation of Free Trade Unions of Macedonia, and the Organisation of Employers in Macedonia. 

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World day 2013: Putting the health into health and safety

World day 2013: Putting the health into health and safety

by Tim Tregenza at Apr 24, 2013 02:00 AM |

The ILO World day for safety and health at work 2013 is focusing on the prevention of occupational diseases. The world day, that falls on 28 April is highlighting that of the 2.34 million occupational fatalities each year around the world, fewer than 15% result from accidents, and that there are about 5,500 work-related diseases deaths each day. This imbalance is even more marked in Europe, with under 5% of EU work-related deaths resulting from accidents, according to the ILO statistics.

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Workers' Memorial Day 2013

Workers' Memorial Day 2013

by Tim Tregenza at Mar 13, 2013 12:00 AM |

One of the key messages that EU-OSHA communicates is that good health and safety is good business. An effective health and safety system saves businesses and States money.

This should not however obscure the fact that it is the injured or ill worker who pays the highest price for occupational accidents and ill health. 

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Networking as a driving force for a culture of prevention

Networking as a driving force for a culture of prevention

by Tim Tregenza at Feb 14, 2013 12:00 AM |

How do we integrate occupational safety and health into the bigger picture of employment and social policy on a global scale?

One way is to hold a conference on networking as a driving force for a culture of prevention with delegates from 33 countries and representatives from many international and national expert bodies.

Hosted by DGUV (Deutsche Gesetzliche Unfallversicherung) during 6 – 8  February 2013 in Dresden, the conference was opened by keynote statements from Maria Neira (WHO),Seiji Machida ( ILO), Hans-Horst Konkolewsky (ISSA), Kazutaka Kogi (ICOH), Kevin Myers (IALI), Walter Eichendorf (DGUV), and Director of EU-OSHA Christa Sedlatschek.

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