Thursday, October 26th the Labour Inspection informed horeca (the hotel, restaurant and catering industry) companies about the ‘Horeca 2017’ inspection project, which runs from November 1st, 2017 till May 1st, 2018. More than 50 people attended the meeting.
The introductions were given by speakers of the Labour Inspection, Sieverding Management & Consultancy and by the Fire Department. Inspector Darrel Frans was the first speaker. He explained why attention or occupational safety and health at the workplace is also required in the hotel, restaurant and catering industry. He discussed, among others, the storage and use of hazardous substances. This includes chemicals which are used for the maintenance of swimming pools, and cleaning agents and agents used for the maintenance of buildings and machines such as turpentine, oils and paint. Other matters which are checked by the Labour Inspection such as illegal employment and the minimum wage were addressed as well.
Mrs. Vronie Sieverding discussed the physical stress of employees working in the restaurant and housekeeping branches of horeca. Although there are no legal regulations yet to prevent and reduce physical stress, this urgently requires attention. Many employees are suffering from pulse, shoulder, back and knee problems. Mrs. Sieverding’s presentation clearly showed that these problems can be prevented by proper instructions and by using professional cleaning equipment. The use of this equipment will also lead to efficiency gains, as a result of which costs can be controlled.
Finally, Mr. Franciscus Francees, the Caribbean Netherlands Fire Department’s head of Prevention, gave an introduction on fire prevention. In a clear presentation he discussed why fire prevention is required, which technical and organisational measured can be taken to prevent fire and what to do in case of an emergency situation. He also discussed when which fire extinguishing equipment should be used. It was particularly urged that in case of an incipient fire, one should always notify the Fire Department first.
Each presentation was followed by a set of statements to which one could respond by means of a green or red card. The participants also had the opportunity to ask questions. So it was not just listening, there also was a lively interaction between the speakers and the audience. All in all it was a successful evening.
For the purpose of the information and instructions which should be provided by the employers to the employees, the Labour Inspection has published an information brochure which describes the main safety and health risks. Employers can obtain these brochures free of charge at the reception desk of the Social Affairs and Labour Unit.