Factory fire: ensuring workers’ rights
THE question today is what have we done for our workplace and your workers’ safety? It is time every one of us looked into their own lives. Are we endangering the lives of people who work for us? Are we giving them their basic right of safety?
I urge every factory, office, warehouses and business owner to pay heed to emergency-safety protocols. Provide your employees with a fire escape, equip your factory with fire extinguishers, get your electricity wiring inspected, and give regular safety drills by providing a functional fire-alarm system.
We, as young doctors, trained first responders and primary trauma-care experts extend our help and support. We have been training people to prevent such emergencies, and in the event of one, handling trauma, burns, fractures, smoke inhalations, drowning, choking, heart attacks, snakebites, etc., through our organisation, the First Response Initiative of Pakistan (FRIP).
I urge employees and labourers to demand their basic rights from their employers. It is your right to be protected from such calamities. Ask your employers to create safety exits, ask them to perform regular drills, and be trained in the event of such an emergency.
If we learned one thing out of the recent tragedy of the fire in the factory, it is to follow safety protocols.
Remember: prevention is always better than cure.
Dr JAHANZEB EFFENDI
AS regards the fire incident, industries should offer workers group life insurance cover, as well as workmen compensation insurance.
I hope legal experts in the field of Industrial Relations Ordinance’ can throw more light and help the deprived families to come out of this tragedy.
THE loss of many precious lives in the fire incidents of Karachi and Lahore are most unfortunate.
Labour laws were not implemented properly in both the factories. Officials who submitted the reports of all right are also responsible for the incidents. A thorough investigation should be conducted of the incidents.
The authorities concerned should take appropriate steps for the safety of workers in all the establishments to avoid such incidents in future.
SOHAIL AHMAD SAQIB
Role of firefighters
I WANT to draw the attention of your readers to fire safety specialists who are another segment of our society who can play a positive and proactive role.
From my experience in this field, I know that there are a number of such persons in the country with considerable expertise in industrial fire management.
If they form a professional organisation that aims at assisting the local industry in implementing fire safety standards and local regulations, I am sure a lot of improvement can be made.
There will be problems of course, but they can be overcome. After all organisations like Fire Protection Association, UK, National Fire Protection Association, US, National Safety Council, US, were formed by professionals in the field and are doing a very good job.
Through these columns, I would request all like-minded people to let us get together and do something positive. I will welcome their response.
THE two incidents have exposed the negligence, inefficiency, and inability of the federal and provincial governments to avert any disaster.
Instead of politicising the issue, the federal and provincial governments ought to take drastic action against all culprits, including the owner of industrial units, irrespective of their political affiliations.
RAJA SHAFAAT ULLAH