UNI Europa Graphical and Packaging organised a joint conference with industriAll Europe on occupational health and safety in the packaging and tissue industry in Pisa, Italy. The one-day event was hosted by our Italian affiliates SLC-CGIL and FISTEL-CISL and received funding from the European Workers Participation Fund.
Gianni Rosas, Director of the ILO Office for Italy and San Marino, provided context on the significant milestone of the inclusion of “a safe and healthy working environment” in the ILO’s framework of fundamental principles and rights at work in June 2022.
Participants also emphasised the health and safety of women in the sector.
Joaquina Rodriguez, President of UNI Graphical and Packaging, underlined the importance of introducing preventive measures that take into account the specificities of women at work. Women are more susceptible to musculoskeletal disorders from repetitive movements and are more at risk of sexual harassment. They can also face vaginal infections due to high levels of workplace humidity. Appropriate paid leave and work organization should also safeguard women’s health during menstruation, pregnancy, abortion, breastfeeding, and menopause.
Moreover, the conference provided an occasion to evaluate the state of the sector following the end of the pandemic. A survey was commissioned, and its findings revealed that musculoskeletal disorders and back pain are the predominant health issues, with high workload and night shifts as the primary causes.
Crucial discussions were also initiated regarding psychosocial risks and the impact of the use of artificial intelligence in the workplace on workers’ health and safety.
Finally, to further this initiative where affiliates shared their work and commitment on the topic, the Italian affiliates supported a motion on occupational health and safety in the sectors represented by UNI Europa Graphical and Packaging. Consequently, the motion will be presented during the UNI Europa G&P and UNI G&P Conferences in Marseille in mid-November of this year.