International Workers' Association
The International Workers' Association is an international federation of anarcho-syndicalist labor unions and initiatives. Based on the principles of revolutionary unionism, the international aims to create unions capable of fighting for the economic and political interests of the working class and to directly abolish capitalism and the state through "the establishment of economic communities and administrative organs run by the workers." At its peak the International represented millions of people worldwide. Its member unions played a central role in the social conflicts of the 1930s; however the International was formed as many countries were entering periods of extreme repression, many of the largest IWA unions were shattered during that period. As a result, by the end of World War II all but one of the International's branches had ceased to function as unions, a slump which continued throughout the 1940s and 1950s, it would not be until the late 1970s, with the death of Spanish caudillo Francisco Franco, that it would see a major union, the Confederación Nacional del Trabajo reform within its ranks.
After the 1970s, the International expanded and counts 11 member sections and 6 Friends. The IWA programme promotes a form of non-hierarchical unionism which seeks to unite workers to fight for economic and political advances towards the final aim of libertarian communism; this federation is designed to both contest immediate industrial relations issues such as pay, working conditions and labor law, pursue the reorganization of society into a global system of economic communes and administrative groups based within a system of federated free councils at local, regional and global levels. This reorganization would form the underlying structure of a self-managed society based on pre-planning and mutual aid—the establishment of anarchist communism; the IWA's Principles and Statutes state its role as being: "To carry on the day-to-day revolutionary struggle for the economic and intellectual advancement of the working class within the limits of present-day society, to educate the masses so that they will be ready to independently manage the processes of production and distribution when the time comes to take possession of all the elements of social life."
The IWA explicitly rejects centralism, political parties and statism, including the idea of the dictatorship of the proletariat, as offering the means to carry out such change, drawing on anarchist critiques written both before and after the Russian revolution, most famously Mikhail Bakunin's suggestion that: "If you took the most ardent revolutionary, vested him in absolute power, within a year he would be worse than the Tsar himself."It rejects the concept of economic determinism from some Marxists that liberation would come about. Its methods of struggle are: strikes, sabotage, etc. Direct action reaches its deepest expression in the general strike, which should be, from the point of view of revolutionary unionism, the prelude to the social revolution.... Only in the economic and revolutionary organisations of the working class are there forces capable of bringing about its liberation and the necessary creative energy for the reorganisation of society on the basis of libertarian communism.
The IWA rejects all political and national frontiers and calls for radical changes to the means of production to lessen humanity's environmental impact. From an early stage, the IWA has taken an anti-militarist stance, reflecting the overwhelming anarchist attitude since the First World War that the working class should not engage with the power struggles between ruling classes - and should not die for them, it included a commitment to anti-militarism in its core principles and in 1926 it founded an International Anti-Militarist Coalition to promote disarmament and gather information on war production. While regarding industrial acts such as strikes, etc. as the primary means of struggle against what the IWA viewed as capitalist and state exploitation, the founding document of the IWA states that syndicalists recognize "as valid that violence that may be used as a means of defense against the violent methods used by the ruling classes during the struggles that lead up to the revolutionary populace expropriating the lands and means of production."
It is stressed that this should occur through the formation of a democratic popular militia rather than through a traditional military hierarchy. This has been posited as an alternative to the dictatorship of the proletariat model; the IWA admits organizations which are in full agreement with its Aims and Principles in countries where there is not an affiliated group in existence, requiring them to pay affiliation fees to help maintain the IWA's structure. Member groups are able to participate in and benefit from the global community the IWA provides and can vote in its highest decision-making event, the International Congress, held once every two years. Proposals are submitted at national level at least six months before congress, to allow other national groups to consult and mandate members
Strike action called labor strike, labour strike, or strike, is a work stoppage, caused by the mass refusal of employees to work. A strike takes place in response to employee grievances. Strikes became common during the Industrial Revolution, when mass labor became important in factories and mines. In most countries, strike actions were made illegal, as factory owners had far more power than workers. Most Western countries legalized striking in the late 19th or early 20th centuries. Strikes are sometimes used to pressure governments to change policies. Strikes destabilize the rule of a particular political party or ruler. Notable examples are the 1980 Gdańsk Shipyard, the 1981 Warning Strike, led by Lech Wałęsa; these strikes were significant in the long campaign of civil resistance for political change in Poland, were an important mobilizing effort that contributed to the fall of the Iron Curtain and the end of communist party rule in eastern Europe. The use of the English word "strike" was first seen in 1768, when sailors, in support of demonstrations in London, "struck" or removed the topgallant sails of merchant ships at port, thus crippling the ships.
Official publications have used the more neutral words "work stoppage" or "industrial dispute". The first certain account of strike action was towards the end of the 20th dynasty, under Pharaoh Ramses III in ancient Egypt on 14 November 1152 BC; the artisans of the Royal Necropolis at Deir el-Medina walked off their jobs because they had not been paid. The Egyptian authorities raised the wages. An early predecessor of the general strike may have been the secessio plebis in ancient Rome. In The Outline of History, H. G. Wells characterized this event as "the general strike of the plebeians, their first strike occurred because they "saw with indignation their friends, who had served the state bravely in the legions, thrown into chains and reduced to slavery at the demand of patrician creditors." The strike action only became a feature of the political landscape with the onset of the Industrial Revolution. For the first time in history, large numbers of people were members of the industrial working class.
By the 1830s, when the Chartist movement was at its peak in Britain, a true and widespread'workers consciousness' was awakening. In 1842 the demands for fairer wages and conditions across many different industries exploded into the first modern general strike. After the second Chartist Petition was presented to Parliament in April 1842 and rejected, the strike began in the coal mines of Staffordshire and soon spread through Britain affecting factories, mills in Lancashire and coal mines from Dundee to South Wales and Cornwall. Instead of being a spontaneous uprising of the mutinous masses, the strike was politically motivated and was driven by an agenda to win concessions; as much as half of the industrial work force were on strike at its peak – over 500,000 men. The local leadership marshalled a growing working class tradition to politically organize their followers to mount an articulate challenge to the capitalist, political establishment. Friedrich Engels, an observer in London at the time, wrote: by its numbers, this class has become the most powerful in England, woe betide the wealthy Englishmen when it becomes conscious of this fact...
The English proletarian is only just becoming aware of his power, the fruits of this awareness were the disturbances of last summer. As the 19th century progressed, strikes became a fixture of industrial relations across the industrialized world, as workers organized themselves to collectively bargain for better wages and standards with their employers. Karl Marx has condemned the theory of Pierre-Joseph Proudhon criminalizing strike action in his work The Poverty of Philosophy. In 1937 there were 4,740 strikes in the United States; this was the greatest strike wave in American labor history. The number of major strikes and lockouts in the U. S. fell by 97% from 381 in 1970 to 187 in 1980 to only 11 in 2010. Companies countered the threat of a strike by threatening to move a plant. International Covenant on Economic and Cultural Rights adopted in 1967 ensure the right to strike in Article 8 and European Social Charter adopted in 1961 ensure the right to strike in Article 6; the Farah Strike, 1972–1974, labeled the "strike of the century," and it was organized and led by Mexican American women predominantly in El Paso, Texas.
Most strikes are undertaken by labor unions during collective bargaining as a last resort. The object of collective bargaining is for the employer and the union to come to an agreement over wages and working conditions. A collective bargaining agreement may include a clause which prohibits the union from striking during the term of the agreement, known as a "no-strike clause." No-strike clauses arose in the United States following World War II. Some in the labor movement consider no-strike clauses to be an unnecessary detriment to unions in the collective bargaining process. Strikes are rare: according to the News Media Guild, 98% of union contracts in the United States are settled each of the 67 years without a strike. Workers decide to strike without the sanction of a labor union, either because the union refuses to endorse such a tactic, or because the workers concerned are non-unionized; such strikes are described as unofficial. Strikes without formal union authorization are known as wildcat strikes
Labour law is the area of law most relating to the relationship between trade unions and the government. While the development of the field in different jurisdictions has resulted in different specific meanings of what is meant by labour law, it is used in reference to employment contexts that involve a trade union, while the term employment law is used for workplaces where the legal relationship is directly between the employer and the employee. While in some jurisdictions the term may be used to refer to such law that may not involve trade unions, the genesis of the term is inseparable and begins with the labour union movements. At the statutory level, Labour law is concerned with the establishment of a labour-relations framework that provides for orderly and peaceful industrial relations between employers and organized workers, includes rules on forming a union, conditions under which the union becomes bargaining agent and lock-outs, process for negotiations, other structural elements that permit the employer and the union to bargain a collective agreement and fill-in the rest specific to rules and conditions relating to the workplace.
It arises from and in the context of British common law and related jurisdictions, to which it is historically linked as wage work begins in the Industrial Revolution, in this way, labour law and related concepts mark a departure from the tradition of contract law that existed for master-servant relations to that point. Labour law is not the law that regulates minimum standards of employment in most British common law jurisdictions, but is the law that pertains to the rules meant to provide a framework for labour relations and collective bargaining. Employment law, or employment standards law, refers to the regulations in statute law that establish minimum conditions relating to the employment of persons, such as minimum working age, minimum hourly wage, so on. Labour law arose in parallel with the Industrial Revolution as the relationship between worker and employer changed from small-scale production studios to large-scale factories. Workers sought better conditions and the right to join a labour union, while employers sought a more predictable and less costly workforce.
The state of labour law at any one time is therefore both the product of, a component of struggles between various social forces. As England was the first country to industrialize, it was the first to face the appalling consequences of industrial revolution in a less regulated economic framework. Over the course of the late 18th and early to mid-19th century the foundation for modern labour law was laid, as some of the more egregious aspects of working conditions were ameliorated through legislation; this was achieved through the concerted pressure from social reformers, notably Anthony Ashley-Cooper, 7th Earl of Shaftesbury, others. A serious outbreak of fever in 1784 in cotton mills near Manchester drew widespread public opinion against the use of children in dangerous conditions. A local inquiry, presided over by Dr Thomas Percival, was instituted by the justices of the peace for Lancashire, the resulting report recommended the limitation of children's working hours. In 1802, the first major piece of labour legislation was passed − the Health and Morals of Apprentices Act.
This was the first, albeit modest, step towards the protection of labour. The act abolished night work, it required the provision of a basic level of education for all apprentices, as well as adequate sleeping accommodation and clothing. The rapid industrialisation of manufacturing at the turn of the 19th century led to a rapid increase in child employment, public opinion was made aware of the terrible conditions these children were forced to endure; the Factory Act of 1819 was the outcome of the efforts of the industrialist Robert Owen and prohibited child labour under nine years of age and limited the working day to twelve. A great milestone in labour law was reached with the Factory Act of 1833, which limited the employment of children under eighteen years of age, prohibited all night work and, provided for inspectors to enforce the law. Pivotal in the campaigning for and the securing of this legislation were Michael Sadler and the Earl of Shaftesbury; this act was an important step forward, in that it mandated skilled inspection of workplaces and a rigorous enforcement of the law by an independent governmental body.
A lengthy campaign to limit the working day to ten hours was led by Shaftesbury, included support from the Anglican Church. Many committees were formed in support of the cause and some established groups lent their support as well; the campaign led to the passage of the Factory Act of 1847, which restricted the working hours of women and children in British factories to 10 hours per day. These early efforts were principally aimed at limiting child labour. From the mid-19th century, attention was first paid to the plight of working conditions for the workforce in general. In 1850, systematic reporting of fatal accidents was made compulsory, basic safeguards for health and limb in the mines were put in place from 1855. Further regulations, relating to ventilation, fencing of disused shafts, signalling standards, proper gauges and valves for steam-boilers and related machinery were set down. A series of further Acts, in 1860 and 1872 extended the legal provisions and strengthened safety provisions.
Steady development of the coal industry, increasing association among miners, increased scientific knowledge paved the way for the Coa
A cooperative is "an autonomous association of persons united voluntarily to meet their common economic and cultural needs and aspirations through a jointly-owned and democratically-controlled enterprise". Cooperatives may include: businesses owned and managed by the people who use their services organizations managed by the people who work there multi-stakeholder or hybrid cooperatives that share ownership between different stakeholder groups. For example, care cooperatives where ownership is shared between both care-givers and receivers. Stakeholders might include non-profits or investors. Second- and third-tier cooperatives whose members are other cooperatives platform cooperatives that use a cooperatively owned and governed website, mobile app or a protocol to facilitate the sale of goods and services. Research published by the Worldwatch Institute found that in 2012 one billion people in 96 countries had become members of at least one cooperative; the turnover of the largest three hundred cooperatives in the world reached $2.2 trillion.
Cooperative businesses are more economically resilient than many other forms of enterprise, with twice the number of co-operatives surviving their first five years compared with other business ownership models. Cooperatives have social goals which they aim to accomplish by investing a proportion of trading profits back into their communities; as an example of this, in 2013, retail co-operatives in the UK invested 6.9% of their pre-tax profits in the communities in which they trade as compared with 2.4% for other rival supermarkets. Since 2002 cooperatives and credit unions could be distinguished on the Internet by use of a.coop domain. Since 2014, following International Cooperative Alliance's introduction of the Cooperative Marque, ICA cooperatives and WOCCU credit unions can be identified by a coop ethical consumerism label. Cooperation dates back as far. Tribes were organized as cooperative structures, allocating jobs and resources among each other, only trading with the external communities.
In alpine environments, trade could only be maintained in organized cooperatives to achieve a useful condition of artificial roads such as Viamala in 1472. Pre-industrial Europe is home to the first cooperatives from an industrial context; the roots of the cooperative movement can extend worldwide. In the English-speaking world, post-feudal forms of cooperation between workers and owners that are expressed today as "profit-sharing" and "surplus sharing" arrangements, existed as far back as 1795; the key ideological influence on the Anglosphere branch of the cooperative movement, was a rejection of the charity principles that underpinned welfare reforms when the British government radically revised its Poor Laws in 1834. As both state and church institutions began to distinguish between the'deserving' and'undeserving' poor, a movement of friendly societies grew throughout the British Empire based on the principle of mutuality, committed to self-help in the welfare of working people. In 1761, the Fenwick Weavers' Society was formed in Fenwick, East Ayrshire, Scotland to sell discounted oatmeal to local workers.
Its services expanded to include assistance with savings and loans and education. In 1810, Welsh social reformer Robert Owen, from Newtown in mid-Wales, his partners purchased New Lanark mill from Owen's father-in-law David Dale and proceeded to introduce better labour standards including discounted retail shops where profits were passed on to his employees. Owen left New Lanark to pursue other forms of cooperative organization and develop coop ideas through writing and lecture. Cooperative communities were set up in Glasgow and Hampshire, although unsuccessful. In 1828, William King set up a newspaper, The Cooperator, to promote Owen's thinking, having set up a cooperative store in Brighton; the Rochdale Society of Equitable Pioneers, founded in 1844, is considered the first successful cooperative enterprise, used as a model for modern coops, following the'Rochdale Principles'. A group of 28 weavers and other artisans in Rochdale, England set up the society to open their own store selling food items they could not otherwise afford.
Within ten years there were over a thousand cooperative societies in the United Kingdom. Other events such as the founding of a friendly society by the Tolpuddle Martyrs in 1832 were key occasions in the creation of organized labor and consumer movements. Friendly Societies established forums through which one member, one vote was practiced in organisation decision-making; the principles challenged the idea that a person should be an owner of property before being granted a political voice. Throughout the second half of the nineteenth century there was a surge in the number of cooperative organisations, both in commercial practice and civil society, operating to advance democracy and universal suffrage as a political principle. Friendly Societies and consumer cooperatives became the dominant form of organization amongst working people in Anglosphere industrial societies prior to the rise of trade unions and industrial factories. Weinbren reports that by the end of the 19th century, over 80% of British working age men and 90% of Australian working age men were members of one or more Friendly Society.
From the mid-nineteenth century, mutual organisations embraced these ideas in economic enterprises, firstly amongst tradespeople, in cooperative stores, educational institutes, financial institutions and industrial enterprises. The common thread (enacte
The eight-hour day movement or 40-hour week movement known as the short-time movement, was a social movement to regulate the length of a working day, preventing excesses and abuses. It had its origins in the Industrial Revolution in Britain, where industrial production in large factories transformed working life; the use of child labour was common. The working day could range from 10 to 16 hours, the work week was six days a week. Robert Owen had raised the demand for a ten-hour day in 1810, instituted it in his socialist enterprise at New Lanark. By 1817 he had formulated the goal of the eight-hour day and coined the slogan: "Eight hours' labour, Eight hours' recreation, Eight hours' rest". Women and children in England were granted the ten-hour day in 1847. French workers won the 12-hour day after the February Revolution of 1848. A shorter working day and improved working conditions were part of the general protests and agitation for Chartist reforms and the early organisation of trade unions.
The International Workingmen's Association took up the demand for an eight-hour day at its Congress in Geneva in 1866, declaring "The legal limitation of the working day is a preliminary condition without which all further attempts at improvements and emancipation of the working class must prove abortive", "The Congress proposes eight hours as the legal limit of the working day." Karl Marx saw it as of vital importance to the workers' health, writing in Das Kapital: "By extending the working day, capitalist production...not only produces a deterioration of human labour power by robbing it of its normal moral and physical conditions of development and activity, but produces the premature exhaustion and death of this labour power itself."Although there were initial successes in achieving an eight-hour day in New Zealand and by the Australian labour movement for skilled workers in the 1840s and 1850s, most employed people had to wait to the early and mid twentieth century for the condition to be achieved through the industrialised world through legislative action.
The first country to adopt eight-hour working day nationwide was Uruguay. The eight-hour day was introduced on November 1915, in the government of José Batlle y Ordóñez; the first international treaty to mention it was the Treaty of Versailles in the annex of its thirteen part establishing the International Labour Office, now the International Labour Organization. The eight-hour day was the first topic discussed by the International Labour Organization which resulted in the Hours of Work Convention, 1919 ratified by 52 countries as of 2016; the eight-hour day movement forms part of the early history for the celebration of Labour Day, May Day in many nations and cultures. In Iran in 1918, the work of reorganizing the trade unions began in earnest in Tehran during the closure of the Iranian constitutional parliament Majles; the printers' union, established in 1906 by Mohammad Parvaneh as the first trade union, in the Koucheki print shop on Nasserieh Avenue in Tehran, reorganized their union under leadership of Russian-educated Seyed Mohammad Dehgan, a newspaper editor and an avowed Communist.
In 1918, the newly organised union staged a 14-day strike and succeeded in reaching a collective agreement with employers to institute the eight-hours day, overtime pay, medical care. The success of the printers' union encouraged other trades to organize. In 1919 the bakers and textile-shop clerks formed their own trade unions; however the eight-hours day only became as code by a limited governor's decree on 1923 by the governor of Kerman and Balochistan, which controlled the working conditions and working hours for workers of carpet workshops in the province. In 1946 the council of ministers issued the first labor law for Iran, which recognized the eight-hour day; the first company to introduce an eight-hour working day in Japan was the Kawasaki Dockyards in Kobe. An eight-hour day was one of the demands presented by the workers during pay negotiations in September 1919. After the company resisted the demands, a slowdown campaign was commenced by the workers on 18 September. After ten days of industrial action, company president Kōjirō Matsukata agreed to the eight-hour day and wage increases on 27 September, which became effective from October.
The effects of the action were felt nationwide and inspired further industrial action at the Kawasaki and Mitsubishi shipyards in 1921. The eight-hour day did not become law in Japan until the passing of the Labor Standards Act in April 1947. Article 32 of the Act specifies a 40-hour week and paragraph specifies an eight-hour day, excluding rest periods. In Indonesia, the first policy regarding working time regulated in Law No. 13 of 2003 about employment. In the law, it stated that a worker should work for 7 hours a day for 6 days a week or 8 hours a day for 5 days a week, excluding rest periods; the 8-hour work day was introduced in Belgium on September 9, 1924. The 8-hour work day was first introduced in 1907. Within the next few decades, the 8-hour system spread across technically all branches of work. A worker receives 150% payment from the first two extra hours, 200% salary if the work day exceeds 10 hours; the eight-hour day was enacted in France by Georges Clemenceau, as a way to avoid unemployment and diminish communist support.
It was succeeded by a strong French support of it during the writing of the International Labour Organization Convention of 1919. The first German company to introduce the eight-hour day was Degussa; the eight-hour day was signed into law during the German Revolution of 1918. In Hungary, the eight-hour work day was introduced on April 14, 1919 by decree of the Revolutionary Governing Council. In Poland, the eight-hour day was i
Industrial relations or employment relations is the multidisciplinary academic field that studies the employment relationship. The newer name, "employment relations" is taking precedence because "industrial relations" is seen to have narrow connotations. Industrial relations has been concerned with employment relationships in the broadest sense, including "non-industrial" employment relationships; this is sometimes seen as paralleling a trend in the separate but related disciple of human resource management. While some scholars regard or treat industrial/employment relations as synonymous with employee relations and labour relations, this is controversial, because of the narrower focus of employee/labour relations, i.e. on employees or labour, from the perspective of employers, managers and/or officials. In addition, employee relations is perceived as dealing only with non-unionized workers, whereas labour relations is seen as dealing with organized labour, i.e unionized workers. Some academics and other institutions regard human resource management as synonymous with one or more of the above disciplines, although this too is controversial.
Industrial relations examines various employment situations, not just ones with a unionized workforce. However, according to Bruce E. Kaufman, "To a large degree, most scholars regard trade unionism, collective bargaining and labour–management relations, the national labour policy and labour law within which they are embedded, as the core subjects of the field."Initiated in the United States at end of the 19th century, it took off as a field in conjunction with the New Deal. However, it is regarded as a separate field of study only in English-speaking countries, having no direct equivalent in continental Europe. In recent times, industrial relations has been in decline as a field, in correlation with the decline in importance of trade unions and with the increasing preference of business schools for the human resource management paradigm. Industrial relations has three faces: science building, problem solving, ethical. In the science building phase, industrial relations is part of the social sciences, it seeks to understand the employment relationship and its institutions through high-quality, rigorous research.
In this vein, industrial relations scholarship intersects with scholarship in labour economics, industrial sociology and social history, human resource management, political science and other areas. Industrial relations scholarship assumes that labour markets are not competitive and thus, in contrast to mainstream economic theory, employers have greater bargaining power than employees. Industrial relations scholarship assumes that there are at least some inherent conflicts of interest between employers and employees and thus, in contrast to scholarship in human resource management and organizational behaviour, conflict is seen as a natural part of the employment relationship. Industrial relations scholars therefore study the diverse institutional arrangements that characterize and shape the employment relationship—from norms and power structures on the shop floor, to employee voice mechanisms in the workplace, to collective bargaining arrangements at company, regional, or national level, to various levels of public policy and labour law regimes, to varieties of capitalism.
When labour markets are seen as imperfect, when the employment relationship includes conflicts of interest one cannot rely on markets or managers to always serve workers' interests, in extreme cases to prevent worker exploitation. Industrial relations scholars and practitioners, support institutional interventions to improve the workings of the employment relationship and to protect workers' rights; the nature of these institutional interventions, differ between two camps within industrial relations. The pluralist camp sees the employment relationship as a mixture of shared interests and conflicts of interests that are limited to the employment relationship. In the workplace, therefore, champion grievance procedures, employee voice mechanisms such as works councils and trade unions, collective bargaining, labour–management partnerships. In the policy arena, pluralists advocate for minimum wage laws, occupational health and safety standards, international labour standards, other employment and labour laws and public policies.
These institutional interventions are all seen as methods for balancing the employment relationship to generate not only economic efficiency but employee equity and voice. In contrast, the Marxist-inspired critical camp sees employer–employee conflicts of interest as antagonistic and embedded in the socio-political-economic system. From this perspective, the pursuit of a balanced employment relationship gives too much weight to employers' interests, instead deep-seated structural reforms are needed to change the antagonistic employment relationship, inherent within capitalism. Militant trade unions are thus supported. Industrial relations has its roots in the industrial revolution which created the modern employment relationship by spawning free labour markets and large-scale industrial organizations with thousands of wage workers; as society wrestled with these massive economic and social changes, labour problems arose. Low wages, long working hours and dangerous work, abusive supervisory practices led to high employee turnover, violent strikes
Occupational safety and health
Occupational safety and health commonly referred to as occupational health and safety, occupational health, or workplace health and safety, is a multidisciplinary field concerned with the safety and welfare of people at work. These terms refer to the goals of this field, so their use in the sense of this article was an abbreviation of occupational safety and health program/department etc; the goals of occupational safety and health programs include to foster a safe and healthy work environment. OSH may protect co-workers, family members, employers and many others who might be affected by the workplace environment. In the United States, the term occupational health and safety is referred to as occupational health and occupational and non-occupational safety and includes safety for activities outside of work. In common-law jurisdictions, employers have a common law duty to take reasonable care of the safety of their employees. Statute law may in addition impose other general duties, introduce specific duties, create government bodies with powers to regulate workplace safety issues: details of this vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.
As defined by the World Health Organization "occupational health deals with all aspects of health and safety in the workplace and has a strong focus on primary prevention of hazards." Health has been defined as "a state of complete physical and social well-being and not the absence of disease or infirmity." Occupational health is a multidisciplinary field of healthcare concerned with enabling an individual to undertake their occupation, in the way that causes least harm to their health. Health has been defined as It contrasts, for example, with the promotion of health and safety at work, concerned with preventing harm from any incidental hazards, arising in the workplace. Since 1950, the International Labour Organization and the World Health Organization have shared a common definition of occupational health, it was adopted by the Joint ILO/WHO Committee on Occupational Health at its first session in 1950 and revised at its twelfth session in 1995. The definition reads: "The main focus in occupational health is on three different objectives: the maintenance and promotion of workers’ health and working capacity.
The concept of working culture is intended in this context to mean a reflection of the essential value systems adopted by the undertaking concerned. Such a culture is reflected in practice in the managerial systems, personnel policy, principles for participation, training policies and quality management of the undertaking." Those in the field of occupational health come from a wide range of disciplines and professions including medicine, epidemiology and rehabilitation, occupational therapy, occupational medicine, human factors and ergonomics, many others. Professionals advise on a broad range of occupational health matters; these include how to avoid particular pre-existing conditions causing a problem in the occupation, correct posture for the work, frequency of rest breaks, preventative action that can be undertaken, so forth. "Occupational health should aim at: the promotion and maintenance of the highest degree of physical and social well-being of workers in all occupations. The research and regulation of occupational safety and health are a recent phenomenon.
As labor movements arose in response to worker concerns in the wake of the industrial revolution, worker's health entered consideration as a labor-related issue. In the United Kingdom, the Factory Acts of the early nineteenth century arose out of concerns about the poor health of children working in cotton mills: the Act of 1833 created a dedicated professional Factory Inspectorate; the initial remit of the Inspectorate was to police restrictions on the working hours in the textile industry of children and young persons. However, on the urging of the Factory Inspectorate, a further Act in 1844 giving similar restrictions on working hours for women in the textile industry introduced a requirement for machinery guarding. In 1840 a Royal Commission published its findings on the state of conditions for the workers of the mining industry that documented the appallingly dangerous environment that they had to work in and the high frequency of accidents; the commission sparked public outrage which resulted in the Mines Act of 1842.
The act set up an inspectorate for mines and collieries which resulted in many prosecutions and safety improvements, by 1850, inspectors were able to enter and inspect premises at their discretion. Otto von Bismarck inaugurated the first social insurance legislation in 1883 and the first worker's compensation law in 1884 – the first of their kind in the Western world. Similar acts followed in other countries