Deadline looms for farm health and safety project proposals

Relevant stakeholders have been encouraged to get proposals in for innovative farm health, safety and wellbeing projects under the  European Innovation Partnerships (EIP) initiative.

Last month, Minister of State at the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine with responsibility for Farm Safety Martin Heydon launched a €1 million call for such proposals under the scheme.

However, time is ticking with a deadline approaching – stage 1 of the EIP call for proposals on Farm Health, Safety and Wellbeing is closing on Friday, January 29.

Expressing his support for the scheme and encouraging people to make submissions, Cork Senator Tim Lombard said:

“As a member of the Agriculture and Marine committee I have been calling for a review of farm safety initiatives since first being elected to Seanad Eireann in 2016.

Over the past decade farming has remained the most dangerous workplace in Ireland, consistently suffering 40-50% of fatal workplace accidents. This is nearly three times as high as the next closest category.

“Farming accounts for approximately 6% of the workforce; having such a significant fatality rate within such a small workforce clearly illustrates that current farm safety policies are not effective,” the senator warned.

“We need to know what is and isn’t working.

“The farming industry has undergone huge change in the last 10 years; we need to adapt by updating or removing outdated safety measures in order to best address current safety issues and concerns within the industry.”

Senator Lombard continued, stating: “Minister Heydon launched a call under the European Innovation Partnerships (EIP’s) requesting proposals regarding new and innovative ways of dealing with Farm Safety challenges within the sector.

“I commend the minister for making local farmers a fundamental part of this vita process.

I would encourage all interested parties to make a submission so we can collectively address issues of farm health, safety and wellbeing.

At Stage 1, a short application form is required which sets out the main elements of a proposed project.

For those interested, all forms and guidance notes are available here.