Experts: public authority cuts will jeopardise working conditions

Working environment authority will cut 120 jobs

According to budget forecasts from the Finance Ministry, the Danish working environment authority, Arbejdstilsynet, will lose 80 million kroner from its budget in 2016 and will therefore have to dismiss 120 employees, Ugebrevet A4 reports.

As a result, there are grave doubts whether Arbejdstilsynet will be able to maintain its standards.

READ MORE: Every third Danish school has a poor working environment

Sends out the wrong signal
Lizette Risgaard, the deputy-chairperson of LO, the confederation of trade unions, is of the opinion that this sends out the wrong signal.

”Such big cuts in Arbejdstilsynet are a catastrophe for health and safety measures in the workplace,” she told Ugebrevet A4.

”And it is very inconsistent with messages from the employment minister, who has repeatedly been saying that we shouldn’t compromise on our working environments to compete but, on the contrary, that we should work for better working environments.”

Will have a noticeable effect
The cuts will spell a reduction in staff of about 20 percent, and Peter Hasle, a researcher in working conditions at Aalborg Universitet, believes this will have a noticeable effect on the work done by the authority.

”A reduction of 120 employees is so radical that it’s hard to imagine that Arbejdstilsynet can get around it by making itself more effective,” he said.

”It won’t maintain the same level with such drastic cuts.”