All employers are responsible for ensuring that the right level of health and safety is in place within their company or working environment. In fact, there are several health and safety laws that are in place to protect you, your employees, and members of the public from workplace dangers.
But the good news is, managing health and safety in your business needn’t be complicated.
This guide outlines why and when you need health and safety in your company.
Why do health and safety regulations exist?
The main purpose of health and safety regulations is to protect your workers, customers sub-contractors, and members of the public when they are on your business premises or involved with your business.
Under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974, it is your duty of care to adhere to all health and safety laws, prioritising the safety of your employees and members of the public. Under the legislation, the employer must take all measures “so far as is reasonably practice” to prevent or reduce risk in the workplace. This is enforced by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).
As well as being a legal requirement, adhering to health and safety regulations is also goof business practice – failing to do so can result in high staff turnover, increased recruitment costs, and ultimately, lower profitability.
Health and safety regulations are also in place to prevent illness, injury and in some cases, even death. An employer that loses an employee as the result of an accident that could have been prevented if the relevant health and safety precautions were in place, could be charged with corporate manslaughter.
When do you need health and safety in the workplace?
Health and safety plays a key role in the workplace at all times. It’s important that a documented health and safety policy is always to hand – this is a legal requirement. And, if any modifications to the health and safety document are carried out, these must then be relayed to the relevant parties.
Every worker is entitled to work in an environment where risks to their health and safety are controlled and constantly reviewed. According to the HSE, in 2019/2020:
- There were 1.6 million work-related ill health cases
- 0.7 million workers sustained non-fatal injuries
- 38.8 million working days were lost due to work-related ill health and non-fatal workplace injuries
- 111 workers were fatally injured.
Of course, some working environments pose a higher level of risk than others. But health and safety is essential in every single workplace, regardless of the type of work carried out and the industry.
If you would like more advice on health and safety during these uncertain times, our HR team are on hand to assist you. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch!