Labor and Employment Secretary Rosalinda Dimapilis-Baldoz has issued Department Advisory No. 01, Series of 2014, or the Occupational Safety and Health Protection Tips for Kasambahay and Employers, to protect both kasambahay and other household members from domestic work hazards.

“Domestic work, like any occupation, has its own occupational hazards from which kasambahay and members of the household should be protected. We issued this advisory exactly to provide tips to help both kasambahay and employers prevent or reduce domestic work hazards,” said Baldoz.

“It is the employer’s responsibility to provide protection to the kasambahay, especially in the maintenance of safe and healthy working conditions. However, the kasambahay equally shares responsibility in ensuring that household work is safe and healthy,” Baldoz added.

Baldoz issued the advisory pursuant to Sec. 12 Rule V of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of R.A. No. 10361, also known as the “Domestic Workers’ Act” or “Batas Kasambahay” which requires the DOLE, through the Bureau of Working Condition and Occupational Safety and Health Center, to develop standards to safeguard the safety and health of all kasambahay.

Generally, the advisory presents and addresses fundamental safety and health principles; preventive measures to reduce extent of exposure to hazards that may cause accident, injury, or illness; and safety and health concerns associated with typical tasks performed and the working conditions of a kasambahay.

Department Advisory No. 1, S 2014 contains specific provisions on the following: occupational safety and health for employers and OSH for kasambahay.

On the OSH tips for employers, the advisory provides six (6) tips, to wit: (1) Conduct of on-the-job orientation of kasambahay; (2) provision of personal protective equipment based on the nature of the job, such as gloves, face masks, and aprons; (3) ensure that fire protective equipment and other materials such as fire extinguishers, wet blanket, sand, and water are readily available; (4) provision of humane sleeping arrangements, adequate food, safe drinking water, and access to sanitary facilities; (5) availability of first-aid medicines in case of illnesses and injuries sustained during service without loss of benefits; and (6) ensure that kasambahay will not work under hazardous conditions that will endanger her health and safety.

The OSH tips for kasambahay list down 14 sub-topics, namely, (1) general household safety tips; (2) kitchen safety tips; (3) fire safety tips; (4) earthquake safety tips; (5) typhoon and flood safety tips; (6) proper scheduling of tasks to provide rest; (7) handling and disposal of garbage; (8) household security; (9) safety tips in conducting errands; (10) safety orientation during crisis; (11) safety consideration in baby-sitting; (12) tips in handling pets; (13) safety tips in gardening; and (14) use of PPE.

Finally, the advisory, dishes out advice on addressing social issues which may affect the health of kasambahay. One advice is for the kasambahay to discuss with her employer the matter of establishing reasonable workload and working hours. Another advice is for the employer to allow the kasambahay to maintain her personal social circles.

Baldoz has directed the Labor Communications Office to mount an information campaign to make the public aware of the advisory, and instructed the BWSC, BEC, OSHC, and all DOLE regional offices to do the same and upload the advisory on their respective websites.

Any question about this release? Please call the Occupational Safety and Health Center (OSHC) at telephone numbers 929-6036 or 927-0926 or the Bureau for Working Conditions (BWC) at telephone number 527-3000 locals 307-308.

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