ILO and Government of Sweden support textile and footwear companies to establish healthy and safe conditions in the workplace
- Part of the intervention: “Empowering Women Against COVID-19”
Through the “Empowering Women Against COVID-19” project, financed by the Government of Sweden, the ILO supported ten textile and footwear companies to establish healthy and safe conditions in the workplace. The Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) interventions were specific to the situation of the selected companies and ensured the safe return to work after the COVID-19 pandemic for around 2,000 women workers. Six textile and footwear companies installed ventilation systems that ensure airflow and dust filtering. One of the company owners mentioned that the difference the new ventilation system made was huge. “Before the ventilation system was in place, you could barely see the end of the fabric. The view was so cloudy.”
Five other companies upgraded the conditions of the sanitary facilities and installed hot tap water. One of them, located in Shkoder also added toilette units. Three other enterprises upgraded the infrastructure of the wardrobes and staff rooms in view of COVID-19 protection requirements.
In addition, the ILO prepared a “Guideline on Safe Return to Work for the Textile and Footwear Sector in Albania”. This document helps companies to reorganise work in accordance with the ILO OSH standards on safe return to the work place and national COVID-19 Red Protocols.
All the Occupational and Health Committees of the selected companies received training on implementing effective occupational health and safety measures, enabling them to promote these standards in their workplaces.
The significance of ensuring healthier and safer workplaces in the textile and footwear sector through this project was highlighted on the 28th of April, the World Occupational Safety and Health Day by Ms. Fiona Mccluney, the UN Resident Coordinator in Albania and the representatives of social partners.