Labour Ministry crafting OSH regulations for petroleum sector

The Ministry of Labour is crafting regulations governing workers’ health and safety in the petroleum sector, in keeping with local and international standards. Minister Hon. Joseph Hamilton made this disclosure during a press briefing on Friday.

The Ministry is actively involved in the crafting of the Local Content Policy Framework for the petroleum industry, at the level of Labour and Occupational Safety and Health (OSH).

Minister of Labour, Hon. Joseph Hamilton

“I can tell you that we have been tasked by the Government to be at the forefront of developing an Occupational Safety and Health strategy, regulations and laws for the oil and gas sector,” Minister Hamilton said.

He explained that the focus primarily, is specific to oil and gas. However, the policy will be expanded to include other industries, including mining.

“The same way how OSH impacts the oil and gas industry, it impacts other industries and so, it’s wider and as I am saying the Ministry is tasked with holistically developing a framework as regards to OSH for this nation we call Guyana.”

Additionally, the Ministry of Labour’s OSH Consultant, Ms. Gwen King, has told DPI that the Ministry is considering the review and drafting of an effective OSH Act to protect workers. The Act is the primary legislation that oversees workplace hazards.

The Act, which is also based on a joint responsibility system or an internal responsibility system, facilitates collaboration among workers, employers and trade unions’ representatives to identify or develop solutions to workplace hazards. The OSH Department is equipped with trained and qualified officers to conduct workplace inspections and pinpoint defaulting employers. In cases where there are deficiencies, the employers will be advised on the steps they need to take to comply with the legislation. If they fail to comply, the Department has the option of taking them to court.

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