Work kills more people than wars, says head of ILO

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Construction worker on site of Temporary UN North Lawn Building. UN Photo/Evan Schneider

More people around the world die from work-related accidents and diseases than war, according to the Director-General of the International Labour Organization (ILO).

Guy Ryder spoke at the start of the World Congress on Safety and Health at Work which opened in Frankfurt, Germany on Monday.

Nearly 4,000 occupational safety experts, politicians and scientists from 139 countries are discussing ways of making work safer and healthier.

Mr. Ryder set the tone for the conference.

"Work claims more victims around the globe than does war. An estimated 2.3 million workers die every year from occupational accidents and diseases. And that is why I think it is so important that this conference takes this vision of zero fatalities and tries to fashion it into a permanent culture of prevention." (25")

The ILO estimates that the cost of occupational illnesses and accidents at work is $2.8 trillion a year.

Derrick Mbatha, United Nations

Duration:  1’13″

 

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