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Tuesday, November 10, 2015

World Safety Organization Observes November 8 as World Disaster Preparedness Day

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Leaders of the World Safety Organization raise a toast to officially close the 28th WSO International Environmental and Occupational Safety and Health Professional Development Symposium event which was held recently at the Solaire Resort and Casino, Manila. One of the highlights during the event was the official announcement of the World Disaster Preparedness Day, which will be held every 8th of November starting this year.

World Safety Organization, an international professional organization, which seeks to raise the standards of safety in all fields including occupational and environmental safety and accident prevention, declared November 8, 2015 as the first World Disaster Preparedness Day during the recently concluded 28th WSO International Environmental and Occupational Safety and Health Professional Development Symposium at the Solaire Resort and Casino, Manila.

Since it is imperative to ensure safety at all times, WSO has been pushing to improve the safety and health of workers by maintaining an accident and illness-free workplace, improving their quality of life and enabling them to have more fun while being safe. This time, WSO—with the combined efforts of its members and partner organizations—is putting into calendar November 8 as the official World Disaster Preparedness Day, which remembers the devastation wrought by typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines.

“Natural calamities are unpredictable,” said Alfredo A. Dela Rosa, Jr, Director, WSO International Office for Philippines. “Two years ago, the Philippines was faced with one of the most tragic calamities ever recorded in world history. Are we truly ready for those kinds of natural disasters?”

World Safety Organization forwarded the petition to the United Nations, the International Labor Organization, World Health Organization and similar policy-making groups on the local, national and global levels to recognize the 8th of November as the official celebration of the World Disaster Preparedness Day.

Through this initiative, world leaders, who are advocating safety as a way of life, can fully commit to implementing safety rules especially when faced with environmental catastrophes and natural disasters.

WSO has been advocating safety as a way of life around the world way back in 1975. Since it first gathered 1,000 delegates from over 20 countries, new research methods, data and other relevant information in the areas of safety and the environment are being put forward to ensure that safety standards are up to par with today’s needs.

According to Lon McDaniel, Chief Executive Officer of WSO, the organization has developed new certification programs for the extensive reference of over 160 countries, which was well recognized by the United Nations. However, while international-standard safety practices are put in place, McDaniel emphasized that all countries have their own set of safety standards and WSO’s role is “to give the help it can give when it comes to promoting safety in every country.”

He said, “Safe practices around the world change every single day. It’s a systematic analysis of what they need. On the other hand, we let people know what they need to know when it comes to safety to stay current. Safety used to be imposed by the management down to their workers; now, we figured that that didn’t work. So we developed and helped promote the behavioral-based processes and that’s from the bottom up. We get the employees involved in the safety and health management control.”

Aside from the announcement, this year’s event highlighted symposium presentations that focus on developing cooperation between different organizations and cross-disciplinary research that addresses safety promotion and injury prevention. Present during the event was the Honorable Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz of the Department of Labor and Employment to give her keynote address.

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