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"The Role of Non-profit Civil Society in GHS Capacity Building and Implementation" Rico Euripidou.

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Presentation on theme: ""The Role of Non-profit Civil Society in GHS Capacity Building and Implementation" Rico Euripidou."— Presentation transcript:

1 "The Role of Non-profit Civil Society in GHS Capacity Building and Implementation" Rico Euripidou

2 Summary of Presentation  Why worry?  Background: role civil society/NGO’s global “South” Perspective of non-profit civil society in health & environmental issues  Role’s NGOs to contribute to GHS implementation  The way forward?

3 Why worry? ‘Establishing what is / is not potentially harmful to environment or health’

4 Paracelsus ‘ All substances are poisons; It is the dose that differentiates a poison and a remedy.’

5 Numbers of chemicals  over 17,000,000 chemicals assigned CAS numbers Chemical Abstract Service  640,018 commercially available chemicals Chemfinder  about 70,000 routinely transported in UK NCEC  about 500 new chemicals introduced to UK market each year HSE

6 Numbers of chemicals  about 5,000 chemicals with reliable medical toxicology information for acute and chronic exposure (Baxter P, British Medical Journal 1991)  about 36 chemicals used as antidotes International Programme on Chemical Safety (WHO/ILO/UNEP)

7 Chemical incidents reported to NPIS by location, (n=5200)

8 Civil society NGO’s in SA  Environmental racism  South DurbanVaal Triangle  SasolburgRichards Bay  Disenfranchised communities  High rates of illiteracy  High rates of unemployment  Poor living conditions (exacerbating exposure)

9 Why should NGOs be interested in GHS implementation and effective chemical hazard communication?  NGO’s/CSO represent communities - some live on the fence line with industry  Multiple exposures (home, work, env)  Generally limited chemical hazards awareness by end users  Public Health / Environment focus  Limited capacity governments to regulate/enforce/protect public health

10 What possible role could NGOs play in the development of national strategies to implement the GHS?  Assess community awareness  Pressure on govt.  EU – Human Rights Act  SA – Bill of Rights  Between Dept’s. (health & env)  Pressure on Industry  Proactive with communities (partnerships)  Compliance  Ensure tools/SDS accessible to most needy  Awareness initiatives - networks  Fieldwork / training users

11 Challenge to Industry - MSDS 1.Summary key points 2.First Aid 3.Summary of chemical information 4.Summary of human toxicology 5.Acute health effects 6.Chronic health effects 7.Exposure management 8.Summary of environmental toxicity

12 The way forward – role’s of NGOs to contribute to GHS implementation  Awareness raising,  Lobbying and working with govt.  Developing networks – local, regional, national & international.  Equal partnerships with industry and government –  Sharing information  Assessing risks, hazards - monitoring etc.  Responding to health issues/concerns


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