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The business case for managing dangerous substances

There is a clear business case for investing in occupational safety and health — enterprises committed to creating a prevention culture through strong leadership and providing the appropriate resources reap the rewards in the long run.

Poor workplace management of dangerous substances not only puts workers at unnecessary risk, but also results in significant direct costs to businesses and health systems. For instance, workplace exposure to carcinogens is estimated to cost EUR 2.4 billion in Europe each year. Compensation claims from workers whose health has been adversely affected by exposure to dangerous substances at work can also run into hundreds of thousands of euros per claim.

By investing in occupational safety and health, such costs are avoided and businesses also benefit from:

  • higher levels of productivity and motivation among workers
  • a reduction in absence and costs associated with worker ill health
  • lower staff turnover.

These, in turn, make businesses more competitive and successful — a goal for all enterprises.