Davao City- With the goal of safeguarding the health, safety and welfare of the workers in Davao Region, the Department of Labor and Employment XI and its partners commemorated the World Day of Safety and Health at Work with the theme Prevention of Occupational Diseases.

Over 100 safety practitioners, safety officers, occupational health doctors, occupational health nurses, professional organizations, trade unions and industry workers participated in a forum at the NCCC Mall of Davao on May 5, 2013.  Experts were invited to speak on Emerging Issues on Occupational Health; Approaches to Manage Occupational Safety and Health in the Construction Industry; The Role of Nurses in the Prevention of Occupational Diseases and Effective Occupational Health Program Implementation.

In his message to the stakeholders, DOLE XI Director Joffrey M. Suyao emphasized the need to promote, instill and enhance awareness and appreciation of occupational safety and health to improve the quality of life in the workplace. “The moral and legal obligation of establishment owners to ensure that all persons at the workplace remain safe and healthy at all times cannot be overemphasized.  We can be assured of a productive workforce as long as we continue to invest in the welfare of our employees,” Suyao said.

The activity was nowhere near close as the afternoon kicked in with the awarding of Certificate of One Million Safe Man Hours to First Balfour Company for its Therma South 2×150 MW Coal Fired Power Plant project and the Makati Development Corporation for its Davao Hotel Boutique and Suites (SEDA Hotel) project.

Certificates were also awarded to the new Safety Practitioners in the region: Mr. Heracleo Andrade for Manufacturing Plastic Plant; Mr. Rex dela Peña as Safety Trainer in Agriculture; and Ms. Kristel Grace Matillano as Occupational Health Nurse in Construction.

For their unwavering support, DOLE XI recognized its partners Philippine College of Occupational Medicine, Inc. (PCOM); Occupational Health Nurses Association of the Philippines (OHNAP); Occupational Safety and Health Network (OSHNET XI); Construction Manpower Development Foundation (CMDF); Association of Safety Practitioners of the Philippines (ASPPI XI); and Association of Construction and Informal Sector Workers (ACIW).

The participants also took the opportunity to avail of free medical services (blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol and nerve testing) by Merck, Sharp and Dohme and Merck Serono Company.

END (with report by Jocelyn Flordelis and Henjie Gatdula)