Disseminating Good Workplace Health in Eastern European Countries

6th Initiative (2005 - 2007)

ENWHP started to focus as early as 2002 on the improvement of workplace health in Eastern Europe and integrated organisations from the Czech Republic, Romania, Bulgaria, Poland and Hungary in the Network.

At that time, low wages made the "new Member States" of the European Union attractive places to invest and to set up production. However not only were the wages lower in the "new and future EU Member States" than those in the "old" Member States, but so were the standards for the working conditions, particularly regarding health at the workplace.

A survey carried out by the European Foundation of the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions found that, in comparison with their colleagues in the existing countries, employees in the "new Member States":

- consider that their health and safety is more jeopardised by their work (40%)
- are exposed more frequently to risk factors such as hazardous substances
- are faced with longer and more anti-social working hours such as night-shifts 
- are less satisfied with their working conditions.

During this initiative the ENWHP carried out three separate network projects to identify the specific requirements and challenges regarding WHP in Eastern European Countries and to pave the way for improved dissemination of WHP in this region:

  1. Dragon Fly
  2. Workplace Health Promotion in an Enlarging Europe
  3. Workhealth II