The Ministry of Social Protection’s Department of Occupational Safety and Health in Region Six yesterday shut down a window manufacturing entity located at Number Two Village, East Canje, Berbice for unsafe practices.
This action, with the assistance of the police, was taken after an employee who sustained an injury on the job filed a complaint with officials at the Labour Department of the ministry. According to information gathered, the owners of the window factory who are said to be Chinese nationals, also have a second location at Albion Village, Corentyne.
This newspaper was informed that on April, 10 a container of glass was being offloaded at the Albion location, when the supervisor requested two workmen, who were without the necessary protective gear, to assist. However, during the offloading exercise, both workmen were injured. One worker, who is now unable to work is said to have sustained a slash on his right shoulder which required 40 stitches, while the other sustained a cut on his leg.
The Labour Department was made aware of the incident only after one of the workers recently filed a complaint in the hope of seeking compensation for his injury.
Stabroek News was told that an investigation has been launched and the ministry is requesting certain information from the proprietors. According to a source, one of the owners and the supervisor visited the Labour Department yesterday and provided information on the incident. However, the owners have to provide further details relating to the other persons who were present at the time of the incident.
Meanwhile, it was further explained that in November last year, officials from the Department of Labour had visited both the Albion and Number Two Village locations, where work was halted until the necessary safety gear was provided for the employees. Additionally, the proprietor was warned about the lack of proper housekeeping practices, the absence of a first aid kit, unsafe and unhealthy working conditions for employees.
At that time the owner had visited the labour office for proper guidance on the way forward.