International SOS Foundation and Fisher Phillips, LLP, White Paper

23 February 2017 ,  —


US organizations have heightened their focus on the issues of health, safety and travel risk for their mobile workforce

The International SOS Foundation, the global not-for-profit organization striving to improve the safety, security, health and welfare of the mobile workforce and US based labor legal experts Fisher Phillips, in partnership with the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM), have published a white paper advising United States organizations of the “Legal Perspective on the Health, Safety & Security Responsibilities for a Mobile Workforce”. The new White Paper explores the evolving legal structure that governs US organizations and their responsibility to their mobile workforce on short or long term assignments overseas. The White Paper also includes a practical Travel Risk Mitigation Checklist self-assessment tool for health and travel risk security processes.

US white paper large image

“We are in an era where new business markets are growing rapidly and international business travel has increased exponentially,” says Lauren Cell, an attorney with Fisher Philips. “While this increase is certainly welcome, it brings with it the challenge of managing and maintaining the health, safety and security of employees traveling or working abroad – otherwise known as an employer’s Duty of Care.”

As the study analyzes the evolving Duty of Care obligations in the US, as well as emerging International trends evident in the United Kingdom and Canada, several case studies are examined. These demonstrate the complexities and potential liabilities US organizations may face, and how this may vary depending on local regulations.

Laurent Fourier, Executive Director of the International SOS Foundation adds, “In today’s volatile global environment, US based companies need to ensure they are taking care of their travelers to be legally compliant and ensure business continuity. Following travel risk management is best practice and vital components of this are: assessing travel risks, developing policies and procedures, communicating to and training employees, as well as effectively responding to incidents. By providing a jointly developed White Paper with the legal experts at Fisher Phillips, our aim is to help educate organizations of the real legal implications they face and, in turn, provide a practical framework that can be implemented to mitigate their risks.”

In addition to implementing travel risk policies, proactively and effectively assessing risks, and clearly and frequently communicating risks and their associated policies, the guidance also calls on companies to develop training and assessment measures.

Cell continues: “Perhaps most importantly, the paper outlines the best practices all employers – large, medium, and small – should take in developing a strong and effective travel risk management plan.”

A copy of the whitepaper can be downloaded in full here.

Notes to Editors

About International SOS Foundation

Established in 2011, the International SOS Foundation ― Ambassadors for Duty of Care – has the goal of improving the safety, security, health and welfare of people working abroad or on remote assignments through the study, understanding and mitigation of potential risks. The escalation of globalization has enabled more individuals to work across borders and in unfamiliar environments; exposure to risks which can impact personal health, security and safety increases along with travel. 

The foundation is a registered charity and was started with a grant from International SOS. It is a fully independent, non-profit organization. The Foundation is currently in the process of setting up an experienced, independent governing Board of Trustees to steer its vision, objectives and future results.