KUANTAN: It is within an employer’s right to cut costs but National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (Niosh) chairman Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye hopes they will not do it at the expense of workers’ safety.
He said there was a trend of cutting costs during a period where the nation’s economic situation was uncertain.
“That is an employer’s right and I do not wish to interfere. However, I want to remind employers not to sacrifice their employees’ safety and health at the workplace.
“When such aspects are neglected, there is bound to be accidents and in the end it will cause more losses to the employer as a result of shutdowns, compensations and investigations. Cost cutting measures can be carried out but I hope it is in other areas,” said Lee after opening the Kuantan Niosh office, the 12th nationwide branch, here yesterday.
Lee also urged industries to show more commitment in creating a safer workplace.
He said there were a total of 52,235 industrial accident cases up until October this year with a significant number of these being commuting accidents at 23,831 cases.
“I propose that employers play a role in bringing down commuting accidents with the help of road safety experts. Perhaps they can get the experts to conduct courses such as defensive riding and driving.
“Occupational safety is a joint responsibility of the employer and employee and not only the job of the Government,” said Lee.
Lee said Niosh had decided to open three more branches in Pengerang in Johor, Manjung in Perak and Tawau in Sabah to meet the increasing demand for Niosh services.