TUC adds weight to calls for action on RSI epidemic

The
TUC is calling for new laws to help tackle repetitive strain injury in the
workplace.

The
union claims half a million UK workers are affected by RSI each year and says
new European Directives could be used to reduce this number.

Speaking
at the annual general meeting of the Repetitive Strain Injuries Association
conference, TUC health and safety specialist Owen Tudor said:

"RSI
is a global disease and Europe needs to take action to prevent future
generations from suffering.

"Work
needs to be adapted to workers, because fitting the workers round the jobs
doesn’t work," he said.

The
TUC is calling for:


a new directive on ergonomics – requiring employers to ensure that work, work
stations and work equipment, such as computers and conveyor belts, suit their
workers’ physical abilities;


amendments to the existing Manual Handling Directive to cover the repetitive
and monotonous handling of small loads; and


updating the Display Screen Equipment Directive to cover the greater use of computer
mice, laptops and palm pilots

The
same proposals were made recently by the influential Employment and Social
Affairs Committee of the European Parliament.

The
TUC also wants more rehabilitation for RSI sufferers to ensure they are able to
return to work as soon as possible.

By Quentin Reade

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