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Anticipate, prepare and respond to crises: Invest now in resilient OSH Systems - World Day for Safety and Health at Work 2021 Report

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Introduction

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a profound impact on nearly every aspect of the world of work – from the immediate threat of acquiring the virus to lockdowns, the closure of businesses, school closures, widespread job losses in key sectors, impacts on global supply chains and restrictions on mobility (ILO, 2020s). These rapid changes in response to the pandemic have resulted in high levels of unemployment, a loss in working hours and business closures, and precarious employment for many workers. Informal workers and enterprises have been particularly vulnerable during the crisis to occupational safety and health (OSH) risks as they lack sufficient and appropriate protections. The ripple effects of the crisis have, in turn, affected working conditions, wages and business continuity (ILO, 2021a). The crisis has also highlighted the importance of access to protections such as sick leave and social benefits.