What’s Happening Now?
International Delegates Meeting on ISO 45001
The international standards-development community met in Toronto, Ontario, to address public comments on the draft international standard (DIS) ISO 45001, Occupational Health and Safety Management Systems (OHSMS): Requirements With Guidance for Use. The ground-breaking ISO 45001 standard is similar in concept to ISO 9001 (Quality Management Systems) and ISO 14001 (Environmental Management Systems). In fact, the three standards share a common framework and core language, known as Annex SL, that is designed to facilitate development and revision of ISO management system standards as well as to make it easier for organizations to adopt a integrated management system approach to various disciplines.
“OHSMS are not new to the OSH field,” explains Vic Toy, CSP, CIH, U.S. TAG Chair. Well-known standards on such systems include OHSAS 18001 and ANSI/ASSE Z10-2012. “What makes this effort unique is the consensus process ISO uses to develop the standard via member countries and liaison organizations,” Toy notes. More than 65 countries on six continents are involved, and the number of participants has grown steadily since the initial meeting of ISO 45001 Project Committee (PC) 283 in October 2013. “This interest underscores the importance of, as well as the potential impact of, this standard on improving worker safety and on organizations seeking to maintain and improve their OSH performance aligned with their business objectives,” Toy says.
The DIS is the fifth of seven stages involved in publishing an ISO standard. One stage separates the DIS from the final step. Called the final DIS or FDIS, it an optional step largely for grammatical edits. However, since the DIS missed approval by a narrow margin of 2 votes, members of the PC283 committee must address the comments on the DIS and produce an updated draft. Then, a second vote will be taken on whether to move forward to the FDIS. Based on that timeline, Toy says that spring 2017 is likely the earliest the standard will be released.
What Will The ISO 45001 Mean For Me?
The proposed ISO 45001 Standard is potentially one of the most significant occupational safety and health voluntary national consensus to ever be promulgated. As an OSH Professional you work with safety management systems standard on an almost daily basis. This standard has the potential to move safety and health management forward on both a global level and in a country-by-country basis. As a professional it is imperative that you understand this standard, implementation, and implication for your company, colleagues, and clients. You will be in the position to advise and guide significant safety and health decisions in the near future.
Proposed Timeline for the ISO 45001 Standard