IMRSS CRAIOVA. ROMANIA
Institute for Risk Management, Occupational Health and Safety (Institutul pentru Managementul Riscului, Sănătate şi Securitate Ocupaţională) is situated in Romania, Craiova https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Craiova) and was established in 10.02.2012.
Those who founded this association wished to be a group of health and safety professionals who wish to share knowledge and information for becoming much better in their branches. It`s a small group of people about 30 who knows each other, trust each other, share information and support each other. We are like a family with the same interest, learning to become better as a health and safety practitioner, colleague and friend.
We are talking each other all the time on phone or using internet and we are interested about laws and regulations, skills and incident investigations. We all could learn from a case study that happened in different part of our country. And the most important thing, we wish to learn from practitioners from all around Europe`s countries.
We are interested in offering the best risk assessments and action plans for reducing risks from workplaces and assuring safety for employees.
As members of European Union we need to know more about different legislations, case studies, qualifications and accreditations needed. Europe it`s our workplace and we need to know about each and every work legislation required.
The Romanian OHS professionals are also interested in continual professional development (CPD), ways of granting credits and utility of selected ways for CPD. The levels of competency established by the Romanian legislation, manager and technician, are accepted by IMRSS members and they would like that their years of professional experience to be validated not compared to education from EU.
The Romanian OHS practitioners are aware about the necessity of a voluntary code of ethics and they express very clear their point of view about this problem in every meeting we had.
We are impatient and wiling to learn and knew more about the role and needs of the health and safety professionals in training needs, common objectives, sharing good practices and case studies. The biggest challenge will be the recognition of OSH professional qualifications from Romania in all EU countries and viceversa.
We are becoming health and safety practitioners according the Romanian legislation but we need to be recognized as a European professional in occupational health and safety and this is one of our motive in joining ENSHPO.
Short history of the role and status of the safety professional in Romania
– Order no.236/12.05.1998 established, for the first time, the OHS external services` provider empowerment and the requirements for OHS consultant. The mandatory conditions for the authorization to provide services in the field of OHS are:
- (art. no 4) 5 years of experience in the field for those with university degrees, or 15 years for those with pre university qualifications; for the members of Labour of Ministry or local inspectorate, 4 years of experience are enough;
- (art. no.6 point d) Technical university degrees and post university degrees with a duration of at least 6 weeks in the work protection field;
The subscription folder should contain (according to art.no.6): the mandatory request form, Curriculum Vitae, diplomas and certificates from the work protection courses, the proof for the years of experience in the work protection field and also in the economical domain of activity, for the empowerment authorization request (art.no.16 point d). The authorization procedure (art.no.9) included presenting a file with all the documents, passing a written exam and interview with representatives of the Labour Ministry. The validity of the certificate so obtained, was of 3 years (art.no.11); for renewing the certificate, a new examination was done after 3 years, with the specification that continuous professional development courses (CPD) had to be attended in the meantime.
Law no.319/26.07.2006 and the Government Decision no.1425/30.10.2006, changed matters in the field. The procedure was changed, the authorization (art.no.36) being made only after the analysis of a candidate`s file by a board of professionals from the local Inspectorate. Other changes were made: the name was modified from work protection, to external services for occupational health and safety (art.no.28) and also the minimum requirements for the employees and the leader of this external services (art.no.32 (1) and (2)). The empowerment was made now for a minimum of 5 years’ experience, without the mandatory requirement of having experience in any economical field of activity (art.no.37 point e); also, a declaration of confidentiality became mandatory (art.no.37 point i).
The validity of the certificate so obtained was of 3 years (art.no.41) – followed by a new examination of submitted files by the local inspectorate (art.no.36); also, health and safety courses needed to be attended (art.no.42) in those 3 years.
Two levels of training were introduced (art.51):
- OHS technician (art.no.48) – with technical high school degree and health and safety courses of at least 80 hours;
- OHS expert (art.no.50)– with an engineering degree, health and safety courses of at least 80 hours and also post graduate courses of 180 hours;
The modifications brought by Government`s Decision no.955/2010 had the purpose of harmonizing the Romanian Legislation with the European Directive 2005/36/EC, in order to allow the free movement of OHS professionals within the European Union, Romania being a member since 2007.
Role and status, esteem
In Romania it`s a qualified job being a health and safety practitioner. If some of my colleagues are seeing this only as a way for making money or if they are doing it because they are professionals, it`s a very difficult evaluation to be made. Some of us are learning to be better, some of us are happy to have connections with Health and Safety Executive (connections mean that you have no problems when they are assessing your company).
In 2002 Law 346/2002 regarding assurance for injuries at work said that doesn`t matter risk assessment level, the company will pay assurance (to a state company) by their mainly activity. So, the company understand that if they have good or bad conditions for workers, the assurance bill will be the same. Risk assessments doesn’t` proof its utility.
Romanian practitioners easily meet the minimum requirements and criteria for eligibility of individuals for manager in OSH:
- Many of them have a university degree or at least at Bachelor level
- All of them have plenty of occupational safety and health training courses at a professional level, more than the minimum required of at least 250 cumulative hours most of them examined
- The legal requirement in Romania for professional work experience first was 10 years and 5 years nowadays, more than the minimum required by ENSHPO, for at least two years full-time since the completion of the occupational safety and health training
- Many of them have done Continuous Professional Development (CPD), between 1998-2006, as it was a legal requirement and after that year, many of them have done other courses for improving their knowledge in a changing legislative environment. Some of them were participating in conferences and seminars without knowing that they were adding to their CPD experience.
- All of them agreed with the necessity of having a code of ethics and agreed to respect such a code.
We are willing to be a part of a community like ENSHPO, for becoming better and recognized as a OHS professionals all over the UE member states.