Bill to amend the working environment certificate scheme

The Danish Parliament recently introduced a Bill to generally tighten the current working environment ‎certification scheme for the purpose of improving its quality.

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With the Bill, the Danish Parliament is looking to introduce increased supervision of enterprises having ‎been issued with a working environment certificate. Under the current scheme, the Danish Working ‎Environment Authority will only carry out inspections of certified enterprises if there is a reason to do ‎so, e.g. a serious accident that has taken place. The Danish Parliament is proposing a three-year trial ‎period in which the Danish Working Environment Authority is to map the working environment of 500 ‎selected enterprises which are already certified under the scheme. The Authority will then be allowed ‎to carry out inspections of selected enterprises without a special reason.‎

Under the Bill, if the supervisory activities give rise to concern, the Working Environment Authority will ‎not issue an order, but instead report the matter to the certification body. However, the Authority may ‎remove the enterprise's certification smiley from the Authority's website until matters have been ‎rectified/clarified.‎

If enacted, the Bill will also ensure that the supervisory and certification bodies will spend an increased ‎amount of time checking the working environment of the individual enterprises when they apply for ‎certification, in order to thereby strengthen the quality of the certification scheme. In addition, it is ‎proposed to tighten the requirements to the working environment inspectors' professional skills level, ‎particularly with regard to the psycho-social working environment.‎

At present, there is no requirement for certified enterprises to notify the supervisory and certification ‎body on their own initiative of any occupational accidents or diseases that have been reported to the ‎competent authorities. If enacted, however, the Bill will require certified enterprises to notify the ‎supervisory and certification bodies of such accidents and diseases.

Norrbom Vinding notes

  • that the Danish Parliament estimates that the Bill will result in increased costs for the public and the ‎private sector totalling DKK 7.1 million over the three-year trial period, but it should be noted that
  • private enterprises are free to decide whether to opt into the scheme and obtain a working ‎environment certificate.

The content of the above is not, and should not be a substitute for legal advice.

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