Our Health and Safety Consultant, Colin Jones, provides us with a Health and Safety update for March 2021.
COVID-19 remains the hot topic for every business, especially when it comes to ensuring your business is COVID Safe. It is also important to remember if you have staff working from home that your responsibility for their health and safety has not diminished. If anything, you should be paying extra attention to this. As an employer, you are somewhat limited to control a home environment in the same way you can in the workplace with regard to staff safety and well-being.
Your staff who work from home may struggle to create a safe, secure, and ergonomic workstation for themselves. Therefore, it is up to you to ensure you can support them as practicably as possible and keep in contact with them, especially with regard to their well-being.
In the workplace, it may be time to start thinking about alterations needed to get ready for 12th April in the road map out of lockdown. Have you conducted a covid risk assessment? Can you implement measures that are feasible to ensure work can continue to operate effectively whilst maintaining the safety of your staff? This is an ever-moving beast, with guidelines and information constantly being reviewed so it is vitally important to be kept abreast of any changes which will affect you. As the government announces the lifting of restrictions we need to ensure we are all playing our part to ensure we do not take a backward step.
The Health and Safety Executive is carrying out spot checks and inspections on all types of businesses in all areas to ensure they are COVID-secure.
We are making calls so we can give expert advice on how to manage the risks and protect workers, customers, and visitors. We are also working closely with local authorities, assisting them in the sectors they regulate such as hospitality and retail.
By calling and visiting premises and speaking directly to employers, we can check the measures they’ve put in place are in line with government guidance.
Inspectors will make COVID-secure checks as part of their normal role in visiting workplaces during the pandemic. To ensure we reach as many workplaces as possible nationally and support the core work of our inspectors, we are working with trained and approved partners to deliver the spot check calls and visits.
Officers that visit premises will be carrying identification from their business and a letter of authorisation from HSE. If you wish to verify an officer that calls or visits your organisation, please call 0300 790 6896.
If you receive a call or visit from us, you should participate in the spot check as failure to do so could lead to enforcement action.
(Extract directly from the HSE website)
Whilst preparations are taking place to have businesses open again and ready for what we hope will be normality, this time should be used to take stock of your business and to review your health and safety processes and procedures. This should be a systematic approach of reviewing policies, risk assessments, method statements, equipment testing, safe work practices, staff health surveillances. Is re-training needed for first aiders?
All these and more should be in place and now more than ever staff health, safety and well-being should be a top priority to assist in getting us as a business community up and running and looking positively to a covid free future.
We are currently offering a complimentary Health and Safety Health Check from our expert Health and Safety Consultant to all businesses. This will allow us to identify any gaps in your current setup. We can advise on any relevant changes and provide you with the knowledge needed to be fully compliant with government regulations.
The rules and regulations around Health and Safety can be complicated. That is why at HPC we have experienced and qualified IOSH registered advisors who have worked with a wide range of clients and industries. The support we offer can give you peace of mind that not only are protecting your people and your customers, but you are also safe from claims.
If you have any Health and Safety concerns or would like to discuss anything further, please get in contact with the HPC team today.
T: 0844 800 5932