• Algis Junevičius, Dainora Gelžinytė Kaunas University of Technology, Institute of Europe


Occupational safety and health is a cross-disciplinary area concerned with protecting the safety, health and welfare of people engaged in work or employment. As a secondary effect, it may also protect co-workers, family members, employers, customers, suppliers, nearby communities, and other members of the public who are impacted by the workplace environment. It may involve interactions among many subject areas, including occupational medicine, occupational hygiene, public health, safety engineering, chemistry, health physics, ergonomics, environmental health, industrial relations, public policy, sociology, and occupational health psychology.
In the European Union, member states have enforcing authorities to ensure that the basic legal requirements relating to occupational safety and health are met. In many EU countries, there is strong cooperation between employer and worker organizations to ensure good OSH performance as it is recognized this has benefits for both the worker (through maintenance of health) and the enterprise (through improved productivity and quality).
In a democratic country every human has got an inborn and constitutional right to free choice of work and business, as well as to have favourable, safe and healthy working conditions. The problems of safety at work and the health of employees are extremely relevant because if someone breaks the basis of the system, people are going to suffer moral consequences. Moreover, hazard often arises to one’s health and sometimes even life. To assure the legal adjustment of safety and health of employees, one has to understand the legal system of this field.
Occupational health and safety comprises all preventative measures aimed at protecting functional capacity, health and life of employees at work which are used or planned at all operational stages of the company to protect employees from occupational risks or minimize these risks. The main safety objective - the prevention of accidents, increase safety awareness at work, it is important to avoid unsafe practices and conditions, each contributing to the creation of safe working conditions.
Every employee must be provided with secure and healthy working environment irrespective of the activities of the company, type of employment contract, number of employees, profitability of the company, work place, working environment, nature of work, duration of the working day or shift, citizenship, race, nationality, gender, sexual orientation, age, social background, political or religious beliefs of the employee. Creation of secure and healthy working conditions in all work-related aspects is the duty of the employer. Occupational safety and health measures in the company are funded by the employer. The state of occupational safety and health in companies is measured to the extent that work equipment and working conditions in the company and its units meet occupational safety and health requirements laid down in legal acts. Employers have legal obligations to ensure a safe and healthy workplace.






Economics of the European Union