With World Cancer Day just around the corner, we thought it was an ideal time to discuss IOSH’s No Time To Lose (NTTL) campaign. The campaign is all about working with employers and employees to fight certain work cancers. Shockingly, workplace cancer still claims an unbelievable 742,000 lives a year worldwide, 8,000 of which happen here in the UK.
NTTL aims to help businesses better understand the causes of occupational cancer so they can take action. The campaign is working to:
Worryingly, many workers worldwide are still exposed to deadly carcinogens on a daily basis. Working with asbestos, coal tars, diesel fumes, metalworking fluids, mineral oils, pesticides, silica dust, solar radiation, solvents, tetrachloroethylene, varnishes or wood dusts without proper protection can be lethal. The burden of occupational cancer report of 2012 shows us just how deadly exposure to these carcinogens can be with a chart of the top ten causes of cancer deaths at work in the UK.
As shocking as these figures are, they may be conservative estimates. The NTTL Work Cancer: The Facts document states: “Because of how data on work-related ill health are currently reported by specialist physicians and consultants, it’s thought that the number of occupational cancer cases reported by physicians or assessed for compensation cases is only the tip of the iceberg.”
Workers exposed to carcinogens at work may not realise their health has been affected until many years down the line. While some cancers are diagnosed up to ten years after the sufferer’s exposure, others can take more than 35 years to develop. That’s why we need to take action now; the longer we wait, the more people will suffer.
“I doubt there are many people who haven’t been affected by cancer somehow.” Explains Bridget Gilmour, Hundred Acre’s founder and director. “The people I know currently affected add up, let alone those I’ve lost. What’s important to me is trying to understand and do everything possible to prevent more. The NTTL campaign highlights so many facts about occupational cancer. If everyone takes something from the resources available to make changes at work this World Cancer Day, it will make a difference. Add that to all the research being done and the personal steps to look after our health and hopefully we’ll see a change to those statistics in the future.”
For more information about occupational cancer and the No Time To Lose campaign, visit the NTTL website. As well as plenty of free resources and advice, you’ll also find real-life stories, case studies, news and updates to read. You can follow NTTL on Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest too.
Don’t forget, World Cancer Day is on Sunday 4th February. We hope you’ll be getting involved to show your support and raise awareness, just like we will be.
If you’d like to find out more about Hundred Acre and the services we offer, please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Either call us on +44 (0) 1933 201103 or write to us via our contact page. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have and help you and your colleagues return home in the same physical, mental and emotional state at the end of every working day.
Hundred Acre – everyone’s safe place