The Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs (BMAS) sources subject-specific advice from experts on a multitude of issues.
Advice is provided in an institutionalised form by committees in accordance with the ordinances associated with the Safety and Health at Work Act (ArbSchG) or in accordance with the Product Safety Act (ProdSG). Although the range of tasks, membership and working methods of the committees are subject-specific, their underlying principle is similar. In addition, the committees work closely alongside one another with a view to ensuring a uniform body of rules and regulations.
The success of the committees' work is reflected in the high priority afforded to the results of their advice - e.g. in the form of technical rules - both in workplace practice and among supervisory authorities, as well as in jurisprudence, regulation and the scientific community. The committees' success stems from their pluralistic composition, which ensures that the relevant groups in society have good specialist representation. Advisory committees have a long history; for example, the Committee on Hazardous Substances (AGS) has been operating successfully for over 40 years.
The Federal Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (BAuA) not only manages the business of the committees in accordance with the respective underlying legislation. It also participates in the committees and their various bodies on a technical basis and thereby also introduces its expertise into this advisory process. In addition, BAuA provides administrative and technical support to the Medical Advisory Board for Occupational Diseases at BMAS.