A part of the necessary response to crises is to uphold occupational health and safety measures for workers in the forest products sector. FSC´s standards mandate that workers’ rights must always be upheld and protected.  Protecting the welfare of workers is a core part of FSC’s values, and It’s very important for me that these values are underpinned through FSC’s health and safety requirements and standards.

In 2020 FSC defined a set of core labour requirements that cover the fundamental principles of the International Labour Organization (ILO) Core Conventions which are included in the FSC forest management and key chain of custody standards used by over 50,000 companies worldwide.

This year, we are looking forward to a significant decision of the International Labour Conference regarding occupational health and safety. The governing body of the International Labour Organization (ILO) has taken an important step towards the possible inclusion of occupational health and safety as the fifth commitment  of the fundamental rights and principles  at work .

If adopted, the proposed amendment would give ILO member states an obligation to respect and promote safe and healthy working conditions in the same manner and with the same level of commitment as the four principles currently covered by the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work

Issues related to occupational health and safety will be an important topic of discussion at the FSC General Assembly  which will take place from 9 to14 October 2022. I appeal to FSC members and certificate holders to follow global health and safety discussions and to continue engaging with FSC to help ensure that the health, safety, and rights of workers are continuously improved and upheld.  

Kim Carstensen