On 1st October the European Commission hosted the signing of the European Corporate Just Culture Declaration. This declaration, although non binding in law, commits the signatories (a large number of aviation stakeholders) to implementing Just Culture. This declaration has been a result of several months hard work, set against an idea originally proposed by ETF. The declaration is in support of the new Occurrence Reporting regulation 376/2014, which puts in to law the requirement for organisations to have Just Culture policies, to support occurrence reporting, and that these must have been consulted with staff. In a good spirit of collaboration the ATM Partners (ETF, ATCEUC, CANSO, IFATCA, IFATSEA, IFAIMA) took the lead in helping to draft the declaration and came together as ATM partners to push a consolidated position. However the declaration is only a first step across aviation in Europe and it will take more to recognise and implement true Just Culture in all organisations involved with aviation.
ETF Political Secretary for Aviation and Tourism, François Ballestero, took part on a discussion panel and remarked at the event: "I have data from ANSPs and experts that show that an open reporting safety culture raises significantly the number of occurrences that are reported. This is crucial to improve the safety in our sector and must be recognised by all players” François also went on to explain the importance of Just Culture: "As you know we welcomed the regulation 376 on the reporting analysis and the follow up of occurrences in civil aviation. It is important that protection and confidentiality are guaranteed to those who report safety occurrences." Although the declaration has been agreed and signed, the next steps are to achieve the challenge to translate it in to action and to start to embed the principles in to organisations. To aid this we are about to work as ATM partners on guidance material which will help interpret the regulation and the declaration to make it meaningful, to allow affiliates to help implement just culture within their organisations.
As we move forward with the next stages of promoting just culture and the deceleration, there’re no better words that those that François ended his speech with: “It is a good first step and we are happy that so many stakeholders signed it. Let’s work on it, let’s give it a chance and just do it!"
The declaration can be found here: http://ec.europa.eu/transport/modes/air/events/doc/2015-10-01-just-culture/declaration.pdf