Figures from the Work Safety Department showed that more than 8,950 labour accidents were reported last year, affecting 9,173 workers, of whom nearly 930 were killed.– Photo vov.vn
HÀ NỘI – Many enterprises have been neglecting to report to authorities the accidents that occur at their workplaces, hurting labourers’ safety and making it difficult for the Ministry of Labour, Invalids and Social Affairs’ (MOLISA) Department of Work Safety to undertake a nationwide evaluation of workplace accidents.
Figures from the department showed that more than 8,950 labour accidents were reported last year, affecting 9,173 workers, of whom nearly 930 were killed.
More than 1,200 of those cases occurred at workplaces where employers and workers had no contracts.
However, the department said that the real number of work accidents in such places must be higher than that. Last year, only 18,885 enterprises, accounting for 5.4 per cent of the total number, reported occupational accidents. The rate the previous year was nearly 7 per cent (18,377 out of the total number of 265,009).
Nguyễn Thị Thoan, from northern Hoà Bình Province, told Lao động thủ đô online newspaper that she has been seeking help from authorised agencies to chase a couple who owned a fish sauce business in Hà Nội’s Thanh Trì District for years.
The couple hired her son to work for them several years ago. He died due to electric shock when trying to open the electronically-locked gate of the business.
The couple told her it was an accident. They promised to give her compensation.
However, after several years, Thoan has not received the money she was promised. Desperately in need of money to pay hospital fees for her ill husband, she travelled to Hà Nội and found out that the couple had left.
“There’s nothing left. They’ve moved. No one knew where they moved to,” she told the newspaper.
Thoan was not the only case. In fact, many private and small-scale businesses tend to ignore or tried to hide labour accidents.
Vice chairman of Hà Nội’s Labour Union Lê Đình Hùng said that many employers tried to negotiate and compensate the families of injured labourers instead of reporting the incident to the authorised agencies.
The reason, he said, was low awareness of employers of the requirements for work safety reporting. Most feared that the authorised agencies would point out shortcomings or violations of labour safety and insurance regulations, forcing them to pay fines or even close their businesses.
Hùng said authorised agencies’ loose management, complicated procedures for reporting labour accidents and a shortage of strict penalties for violators contributed to the problem.
Vice chairman of Việt Nam General Federation of Labour Mai Đức Chính said that the decree fining those who ignored the report on labour accidents was not strict enough. The federation plans to propose to increase the fines.
In addition, procedures on reporting labour accidents should be simplified and could be done via the internet to save time for enterprises. Enterprises should be active in updating legal documents on reporting labour accidents, he added. – VNS