As part of its Healthy Ireland initiative, the Government is currently holding a public consultation on the development of a Healthy Workplace Framework.
Minister Corcoran Kennedy said the workplace offers the opportunity to promote health to a large audience. Minister Breen said that while significant progress has been made in workplace safety, the two main causes of work-related ill-health are musculoskeletal disorders and stress.
Speaking at the launch of the consultation, Biddy O’Neill, the national project lead on the Health and Wellbeing programme, said the objectives are to clarify the current situation in relation to healthy workplaces and to develop the framework. The initial steps in the project involved reviewing international guidelines, the World Health Organisation’s framework and the models in operation in the UK. Also, 20 site visits were undertaken to identify barriers and enablers in the implementation of programmes.
The review examined the evidence on the costs and benefits of workplace wellbeing, the policy mechanisms in place to support programmes and identification of the barriers. Ms O’Neill said that earlier this year three workshops were held with stakeholders who had a remit for workplace health, the healthy workplaces group and the corporate social responsibility forum.
Following the launch in Dublin, meetings are planned for Cork, Limerick and Sligo (see noticeboard page for details). To participate in the online consultation, log on to https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/HealthyWorkplaceFramework