We can often forget that the myriad of safety features that cushion our journey through life is the result of when things have gone wrong. Safety does not happen by accident but most certainly as a consequence of it.
Safety changes following high profile air accidents happen very quickly. Safety changes requiring behavioural changes, even with regulatory support, can take time. The UK Road Safety Act of 1967 introduced clear drink-driving limits. For many years, it was still acceptable as long as you were not caught. Over decades, attitudes have shifted considerably. Today in the UK, if you drive a car under the influence of alcohol, your spouse might even call the police on you; feelings are that strong.
Safety within a different geographical context can present complications and frustrations, particularly when one has come from a nation with strictly enforced regulations and viable resources, infrastructure and support to secure safer outcomes. In my time in the Middle East, I watched as the regulatory framework tightened but the will of those in charge of enterprise to move health and safety forward remained loose. Vietnam is even farther back down the track in terms of its position on health and safety. As the nation and the economy continue to prosper, the importance of health and safety in schools and places of work will become more prominent. We feel we can play a leading role in taking this agenda forward but some changes will not happen overnight, particularly when dealing with parties outside of our domain. Yet, we will persevere because we care.