Friday, 6 January 2017

Health and Safety by Susan L.

  Being the health and safety rep at work is something recently added to my position. It's not like working at a factory where safety violations could cause major injuries but there are a surprising amount of things that can happen even in a home-like environment. I've always been safety conscious so this is simply an extension of what I do naturally.
  I suppose my brain's habit of catastrophizing makes for a good watch dog.
  There are companies out there that are not so conscientious. In a conversation over the holiday, I was told about one, hugely successful, and global company that only hired recent immigrants whose English wasn't very good. They were intimidated into working overtime for no pay. Anyone who didn't was deemed redundant and let go. That's against the law but the company took advantage of the people most unable to speak up for their rights: those who didn't know they had them!
  Thankfully, this one company has amalgamated with another that quickly put an end to this practice and many others that were illegal. They have begun to educate these workers on their rights according to North American law.
  This has me wondering how many other major corporations are doing the same thing?
  It's not something we affluent countries think about very much. We only demand cheap goods without taking into account the ethics, the human cost, the safety and welfare of those who are forced to work in the factories simply to put some food in their mouths.
  There was a brief hullabaloo after the fire in India at a factory killed so many people but, like most news blurbs, it quickly faded into the background. I wonder if Walmart and the other retail giants made changes to prevent this type of disaster from ever happening again? I wonder if they placed demands on the manufacturers to provide a safe workplace for their employees?
  Why haven't I put pressure on the retail and manufacturing giants to do just that? God forgive me for not watching out for the most vulnerable in this global village of ours.
  Hmmm...Instead of hanging up the next time a telemarketer calls, usually someone who speaks English as their second language, I'll ask what country they are calling from. If they are based in North America, imagine what will happen once I let them know their rights! The word will spread like wildfire!
  Can you imagine the difference we'd make if those of us "in the know" all did this? Being a telemarketer has to be one of the lousiest jobs on the planet. They are more hated than tax collectors.
  "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, goodwill toward men!" Lk 2:14

No comments:

Post a Comment