The prevention of occupational risks in companies has historically been approached in general from a neutral approach, by collecting information from workers without differentiating between the sexes except for those related to pregnancy and breastfeeding. Knowing about gender inequalities and their influence on occupational safety and health is essential for companies to apply preventive policies and practices that protect their workers.
“Despite some improvements, the gap between men and women in the workplace continues to exist and therefore in the area of occupational risk prevention. By analyzing the statistics we can see, for example, that men are more prone to accidents at work and more likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease, hearing and lung problems, while women are more likely to suffer from health problems. work-related. upper limb disorders, stress at work or skin problems. Indicators that require reflection when proposing a methodology to be used in the assessment of risks in companies ”, underlined Silvia Snchez, prevention technician at the Umivale mutual.
For this reason, as the occupational risks and the pathologies they cause affect men and women in an unequal manner, the mutual company has published a Code of Good Practice for the integration of a gender perspective in the management of prevention of occupational risks. A document whose main objective is to propose a series of recommendations which help organizations to integrate the gender approach into the preventive culture.
Thus, the guide identifies four phases to achieve this integration: preventive culture, preventive modality, design of the prevention system and integration into the prevention plan.
“The first and foremost is that there is an awareness of this inequality by those in charge of the organization and that all staff participate in the need to integrate the gender dimension in the management of the organization. prevention. It is recommended that the person responsible for the health and safety area of the company has knowledge and training in equality issues or, where applicable, in the prevention department, ”Snchez stressed.
From Umivale, they also stress the need to have the most complete information possible on issues related to the health and safety of the organization. “Include the gender variable in these interviews and surveys which are conducted to obtain more information, ask for the participation of workers in risk assessment processes, analyze the particularities of each workplace, find out whether men and women who they work in the same job and perform the same tasks and in a similar way… these are some of the actions that we can take to integrate the gender perspective ”, added Silvia Snchez.
The guide also emphasizes the importance of having an equality plan in the company, including specific equality content in worker training programs and ensuring the use of non-sexist language in internal communications.
This code can already be consulted in the section on the management of the prevention of occupational risks, on the umivale.es page.