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Program Released for Australia’s first World Congress on safety

Media Release 

16 May 2023

The draft program for Australia’s first World Congress on workplace health and safety will be released today, confirming the global spotlight will be on NSW in November when Sydney hosts the 23rd Congress.

The program, released by co-organisers SafeWork NSW, the International Labour Organization, and the International Social Security Organization, includes AFL Legend and 2014 Australian of the Year Adam Goodes, Atlasian Futurist Dominic Price, workplace injury victim and safety advocate Candice Carnahan and CEO and Business Strategist Zipho Sikhakhane.

Sydney will join an illustrious list of global hosts such as Paris, Seoul, Toronto and Frankfurt. Leaders and experts in work health and safety regulation, business and unions will travel from across the world to share knowledge, research, and perspectives on the gig economy, emerging technologies, safety culture, psychosocial hazards and other key topics contributing to the protection of workers’ lives.

Australia’s World Congress will explore how business, governments and workers can ‘Shape Change’ in the evolving world of work and how to better protect people on the job through keynote presentations, symposia, roundtables, workshops and technical tours. The international guest list includes attendees from Africa, Arab States, Asia and the Pacific, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America and the Caribbean.

The event is being jointly hosted by the International Labour Organization, the International Social Security Association and SafeWork NSW and will take place over four days from 27-30 November 2023 at Sydney’s International Convention Centre.

Head of SafeWork NSW Natasha Mann said: “This is the first time Australia will host the World Congress. It is a chance to share with the world what NSW is doing right and learn ways to better protect our workers.

“From emerging technology to mental health, experts from across the globe will collaborate together for a better future at work, look at the changing world of work and future proof against new risks.

“This is an opportunity to create international connections, hear different perspectives, learn new skills and showcase Australian leadership in workplace health and safety. International Labour Organization Secretary General Gilbert F. Houngbo said: “After the unprecedented global health crisis caused by COVID-19, the world has realised that a human-centred, inclusive, resilient and sustainable recovery is not possible without sound national occupational safety and health standards, policies and infrastructures.

“The 23rd World Congress on Safety and Health at Work will serve as an excellent opportunity to share and exchange knowledge and experience, as well as chart a course to tackle existing and newly emerging issues regarding the safety, health, and wellbeing of all.” International Social Security Association Secretary General Marcelo Abi-Ramia Caetano said: “The intention of the World Congress is to provide a global forum for prevention and to bring together people of all countries and professions to share strategies and shape change in the future of work.

“The future of work will require proactive engagement with work health and safety – and that’s where the World Congress comes in.”

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