Indonesia: Initiating regulatory improvement to strengthen workplace health and safety in forestry

With the inclusion of Occupational Safety and Health Convention, 1981 (No. 155) and the Promotional Framework for Occupational Safety and Health Convention, 2006 (No. 187) as fundamental conventions, the Indonesian Forestry and Allied Workers Union (KAHUTINDO) hosted a multi-stakeholder Focus Group Discussion (FGD), initiating a first step toward regulatory improvement on OSH in Indonesian Forestry.

The FGD was held online on 21 February, and attended by over 50 participants representing workers, forest managements, government, Indonesian Forest Concessionaires Association (APHI), certification bodies and research institutions. 

Welcoming the participants, Agus Salim, Vice President of KAHUTINDO, briefed that the FGD anchors the discussion on the ILO Code of Practice on Safety and Health in Forestry Work (1998) which is currently a reference document adopted by forest management certification system such as FSC, to be applied in the forest operations. 

Representing the forestry industry, Purwadi Soeprihanto, APHI Secretary General, acknowledged the important role of workers in the forest management. It is strategic that in discussing the OSH practices the FGD also addresses pressing dynamic global issues such as climate change, pandemic and technology innovations that are relevant to be included in future development of OSH policies.

In her opening remark, Dr. Haiyani Rumondang, Director General of Labour Inspection and OSH Development at Ministry of Manpower Republic of Indonesia, welcome the initiative by KAHUTINDO in actively encouraging dialogues on OSH among the key forestry stakeholders. She noted that forestry industry is consumer driven and jobs in the forest are considered high risk. Therefore, it is important that workers safety and health in the forestry work are well protected, and OSH Management System is executed effectively. Finally, the Director General recognized the need for the government to formulate policies on OSH system in the forestry. 

FGD Lead, Rulita Wijayaningdyah, reported that the half-day online event has produced constructive recommendations that will be presented to the policy makers and negotiators at the national and global level, to strengthen OSH practices in the forestry sector.