Health and Safety Laws
What are the laws surrounding Health and Safety in the Workplace in Zimbabwe?
At a general level occupational health and safety laws that are applicable to all employers and employees across sectors are the Labour Act, Chapter 28.01 and NSSA (Accident Prevention) (Workers Compensation Scheme) Notice No. 68 of 1990
At a secondary level there is the Protection from Smoking (Public Health) (Control of Tobacco) Regulations S.I.264 of 2002 that prohibits smoking in enclosed public places including workplaces and the Labour Relations (HIV and AIDS) regulations S.I.202 of 1998 which prohibits discrimination on the ground of AIDS/HIV status, including:
- Prohibition of mandatory testing for HIV as a precondition of employment
- The duty to respect the confidentiality of HIV status of employees
- The provision of protective clothing and other safety devices to prevent the spread of AIDS/HIV at the workplace, including mandatory education and information sharing programmes
There are also sectoral occupational health and safety laws. These are laws specific to a particular sector whose objective is to supplement the general laws. These laws cover the mining, industry and agricultural sectors.
The provision for workplace safety are awarded under the Mines and Minerals Act, Chapter 21:05 and its regulations:
- The Mining (Management & Safety) Regulations S.I 109 of 1990
- The Mining (Health & Sanitation) Regulations S.I. 185 of 1995
The main pieces of legislation covering industry are the Pneumoconiosis Act (Chapter 15;08) and the Factories and Works Act, Chapter 14.08 and its regulations:
- Factories and Works (General) Regulations S.I 263 of 1976
- Factories and Works (Registration and Control of Factories) Regulations S.I 262 of 1976
- Factories and Works (Machinery) Regulations S.I 302 of 1976
- Factories and Works (Electrical) Regulations S.I 304 of 1976
- Factories and Works (Building, structural and Excavation Work) Regulations S.I 264 of 1976
- Factories and Works (Elevator and Escalator) Regulations S.I 263 of 1976
There is no specific health and safety law for the agricultural sector. However, the Environmental Management Act, (Chapter 20:27) provides that every worker has a right to work in an environment that does not endanger his or her safety. The Act and its regulations also control usage, storage, labelling and disposal of hazardous substances and articles.
The collective bargaining agreement for the agriculture industry S.I 323 of 1993 requires employers to provide their employees with appropriate protective clothing and such devices to protect them from harmful substances.
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