OSH literacy® can be described as: The degree to which individuals have the functional capacity to access, process and utilize the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) information and services needed to eliminate or reduce risk.
OSH uses a unique system of different shapes, colours, thousands of symbols and specialized terminology to communicate information designed to keep us safe. This communication system constitutes a literacy in its own right. It is comparable to any other literacy such as: language literacy (a, b, c, ?! words), numeracy (1, 2, 3, + – = , calculate) Information Technology or I.T. literacy (@ / -, wi-fi) and financial literacy ($,£, % finance). In this Age-of-Information and the global-workplace, the aquisition of OSH literacy skills is essential to an individual’s long-term health and welbeing, as well as their social and economic mobility. However, OSH literacy has neither been been recognized nor taught as an essential life-skill literacy, until now.
OSH literacy.org is a small, non-profit NGO, which advocates making OSH information and services Accessible to All. We believe this can be achieved by recognizing and teaching OSH literacy to young people in schools and colleges prior to them encountering it for the first time in work or training. We are a collective of volunteer teachers, trainers, health-care workers and OSH professionals committed to making a tangible reduction in the unacceptably high numbers of deaths, diseases, injuries and losses which occur globally due to poor OSH communications, especially for at-risk groups. We are the world’s only NGO specifically focused on this area. OSH literacy is active on a number of fronts and works closely with other national and international NGOs, OSH, educational and private organisations to achieve our goals.