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Global unions sign Health and Safety Agreement with GDF Suez

22 May, 2014French utility giant GDF Suez has made a commitment with global unions to end fatalities linked to the company across its entire operations, including subcontractors.

Gérard Mestrallet, CEO of GDF SUEZ, signed the Global Agreement on Health and Safety with IndustriALL Global Union, Building and Woodworkers International (BWI) and Public Services International (PSI) on May 13 in Chile.

The pact, which is an extension of IndustriALL’s Global Framework Agreement with GDF Suez, sets out to eradicate fatal accidents that have a causal link to the company’s operations.

The agreement also sets out to continuously reduce the number of accidents at work; and to improve health by phasing out products containing substitutable toxic substances, particularly chemicals classified as carcinogenic, mutagenic or toxic to reproduction.

Brian Kohler, IndustriALL’s Director of Health, Safety and Sustainability said:

“GDF Suez joins a small group of companies willing to work with their unions to globalize best practices in health and safety. We aim to protect workers throughout all of its multinational operations, as well as workers sub-contracted to it.”

Particular attention is paid to sub-contractors in the construction phase of industrial and infrastructural projects, with GDF Suez undertaking to carry out a risk assessment of each phase of a project to ensure that best practices are followed. Final approval of projects will include criteria for project acceptance and inspection for health and safety issues.  

The agreement will be subject to annual review in a five-year action plan from 2015-2020.