Launch of First Legal Framework on Duty of Care in India

22 May 2015 ,  —


International SOS Foundation launch India's first ever legal framework on Duty of Care

• Companies in India now have access to comprehensive resource and guidelines on work health and safety mitigation measures
• Return on prevention1 key to maintaining competitive edge in today’s business environment
India Travel 
International SOS Foundation launched a paper on Duty of Care2 to help Indian companies mitigate safety and security risks to their employees while at work locally and abroad.
In partnership with Nishith Desai Associates, a research-based Indian law firm, the paper provides a guideline for Indian companies on protecting their travelling workforce by mitigating health and travel-related risks. 
The paper covers a broader concept of the workplace - which according to Indian law is considered to be out of the conventional premises of the company3 – and includes deputations abroad. 
Endorsed by the Employers Federation of India, the paper:
• Compiles the main national regulations related to the management of work health and safety responsibilities of employers when deputing employees abroad.
• Highlights implications employers face when duty of care is breached. These include direct costs (such as evacuation, repatriation and post incident medical costs) and indirect costs (such as litigation costs, salary costs, administrative costs, productivity losses and damage to company reputation).
• Provides business travel and security advice and recommends risk mitigation programmes, such as pandemic preparedness plans as well as emergency and crisis response plans.
Nicolas Bertsche, General Manager, International SOS India says:
‘’The recommendations in this paper help Indian companies achieve a return on prevention, through the compliance of applicable regulations and best practices with respect to employee health and safety.
Ultimately, this influences a company’s corporate social responsibility, sustainability, competitiveness and reputation.
International SOS has been in India since 1998, helping clients meet the medical and travel security needs of their employees.  We are  confident it will deepen our relationship with our existing clients, and help Indian companies carry out their Duty of Care obligations in a structured approach.’’
For a copy of the white paper, please visit International SOS Foundation.

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.

Notes to Editors

1. Return on Prevention, published by Prevent and commissioned by the International SOS Foundation, analyses the average monetary investment required to relocate an employee for an international assignment and the costs that incur when an assignment fails due to an employee’s inability to fulfil the assignment due to poor health. The study shows how the benefits of implementing a travel health prevention strategy significantly outweigh the operating costs of the programme. 

2. Duty of Care refers to the moral and legal obligations of employers to their employees, contractors, volunteers and others such as family members, when working, posted on international assignments or working in remote areas of their home country.

3. Employer’s Duty of Care when employees are deputed overseas - India Perspective (2015, p. 2), the Employees' Compensation Act, 1923.