Press release: Broad alliance for occupational safety and health
- KAN, the Commission for Occupational Health and Safety and Standardization, has been active in Germany since 11 February 1994.
- International standards are becoming increasingly important for occupational safety and health.
- Whereas KAN’s work initially addressed products and machines, it now also covers services and processes.
Sankt Augustin, 11 February 2019: The Commission for Occupational Health and Safety and Standardization (KAN) has supported the cause of workplace safety and health for 25 years. Its task is to focus the interests of employers, employees, the German Social Accident Insurance and the German government, and to present these interests to standardization activity through DIN. In 1994, this broad alliance was completely new. Germany had a high standard of occupational safety and health, which it feared might be eroded by the growing role assumed by European standards. In order to prevent this from happening, KAN involves all stakeholders, and lends greater weight to the perspective of the users, namely the employees and employers.
KAN is a platform that champions high occupational safety and health standards. It does so by listening from the outset to those who are reliant upon safety. It is not itself a standards body. KAN monitors standardization activity, channels the interests of its members, and presents them in the form of comments to the standardization process, whether planned or in progress. Work at international level is becoming more and more important: many countries are seeking to use standards to strengthen their economies and simplify cooperation. The issue has long ceased to be confined to machinery and products, and now includes services and the design of workplaces. The non-visual effects of light for example are now an occupational safety and health issue, as are IT security and management systems (refer to the overview).
"The world of work is undergoing a process of change, and KAN is evolving with it. Standards present an opportunity to guarantee safety in a changing world. It is important that the benefits are discussed and occupational safety and health viewed holistically," says Dr Dirk Watermann, Director of the KAN Secretariat.
Katharina von Rymon Lipinski
Tel.: +49 (0) 2241 231-3467