Government plans to boost framework of workplace risk management: Tan Chuan-Jin

The Government is planning to enhance the framework of workplace risk management for companies by shifting the emphasis from mitigating risks to preventing them altogether, Acting Manpower Minister Tan Chuan-Jin said on Friday.

More details will be announced later this year.

The Manpower Ministry is also working with the Workplace Safety and Health Council to develop a free alert service to notify firms of incidents and injuries reported by their subcontractors.

"As a responsible employer, it is only right for you to make sure your employees are looked after and taken care of...The human impact of workplace accidents cannot be underestimated," Mr Tan said, after reminding attendees at a convention that workplace accidents have claimed the lives of 12 workers since the start of the year.

In Parliament last Monday, Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Manpower Hawazi Daipi had noted there were 22 construction deaths between July and December last year, twice as many fatalities as there were in the first half of the year.

Mr Tan was speaking to some 800 business managers and professionals at the bizSAFE Convention at the Singapore Expo, organised by the safety council.

At the event, 10 organisations, including a school, were presented awards for their commitment to the bizSAFE programme, which helps companies improve their workplace safety and health standards. More than 17,000 companies have joined the programme since it was rolled out in 2007.

To give small and medium-sized enterprises a leg up, the Government in October raised the cap for grants to help companies improve on their workplace safety through the CultureSAFE programme.

They can now claim up to 90 per cent of the associated costs, up to a maximum of $30,000 for the whole programme. The previous limit was 70 per cent.