Do you have an appointed workplace safety committee in your company?
If your answer is no, or yes but it’s not as well run as it should be, our latest blog can help.
Appointing a workplace safety committee is essential to the maintenance of a safe, well-run workplace. They ensure that all people connected within the workplace are involved with, and kept informed of, all matters pertaining to current Health and Safety standards and regulations.
Everybody benefits from a well run workplace safety committee.
The benefit to the employer, of a workplace safety committee is not to be overlooked. If the employees feel that they have been involved in the development and implementation of safe work procedures, they are more likely to be compliant with these procedures. Actively engaging your workforce in health and safety matters will reap dividends for your company and help to ensure greater protection for everyone.
Pooling knowledge and experience through active employee participation, the employer gains their commitment and greater involvement and ensures that health and safety really becomes everybody’s business.
Workplace Safety Committee – the legal requirements
Section 25 of the Health and Safety Act 2005 entitles all employees to choose a safety representative who will represent them with their employer. Section 26 of this same Act, requires the employer to consult with employees on health and safety matters to ensure compliance with procedures, and to help prevent accidents and illness.
Regulation 23 of the Construction Regulations states that if more then 20 people are employed on a site at any one time, the project supervisor must facilitate the appointment of a safety representative.
The role of the Workplace Safety Committee
Employers can make use of the Safety Committee as a means to consult with employees on health and safety matters. These consultations should be made with plenty of time allowed for the employees to discuss, and give an opinion, before managerial decisions are made.
Consultations with the workforce must take place before any workplace changes, which may affect health and safety, are carried out.
- Any risk protection and prevention measures
- Appointment and duties of staff with health and safety responsibilities
- The outcome of risk assessments on workplace hazards
- The planning and introduction of new technologies – particularly on the consequences of the choice of equipment, working conditions and work environment
Keeping your workforce up to date with health and safety training
All employees must be kept up to date with all of the information, training, and supervision necessary to ensure their safety, health and welfare at work. This will enable them to carry out their tasks properly and safely.
In addition, safety representatives and committee members are entitled to time off, without loss of earnings in order to avail of relevant training and employers must facilitate this.