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13/01/2012

Visit of Roel Gans, Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment, The Netherlands

Tim Tregenza

The Governing Board of EU OSHA is its primary decision-making body. Composed of worker, employer, and government representatives from the each of the Member States plus observers from the EEA-EFTA countries, it makes key decisions on the Agency's work programme and budget as well as appointing the Director of EU OSHA.

Members of the Governing Board not only need to know and represent their national and interest group positions, but also have to be familiar with the dynamic state of occupational safety and health in Europe and the work of the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work.

On 21 January 2012, Christa Sedlatschek, the Director of EU OSHA welcomed Roel Gans, the Governing Board member for the Dutch Government. He is Director of the Directorate for Safety and Health at Work in the Ministry of Social Affairs and Employment of the Netherlands. With Mr Gans was Martin Den Held, the Dutch Government's Alternate Governing Board Member.

The Netherlands has for a long time been highly supportive of Agency activities, with an effective national network run by the focal point manager Mr Henk Schrama from TNO  and this meeting gave the opportunity for Mr Gans to be briefed on the activities of the Agency and how they influence occupational safety and health at a national level. There was great interest in how the Agency's ESENER study reflected how health and safety was managed in The Netherlands.

The Dutch approach to risk assessment in microenterprises has been developed by EU OSHA into a tool that can be applied in all Member States and in all work sectors. The OiRA tool continues to be supported by the Netherlands in its ongoing promotion and dissemination.