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Health and Safety
Health & Safety at Work: Advice for Employees
As an employee, you have a right to be provided with a safe environment in which to work, and if necessary for your particular job, proper training, supervision, tools and clothing to protect you from illness or injury. This applies whether you work on company premises, or remotely.
If an employer fails in their duty to keep you safe and well whilst at work, then you are within your rights to take action if you have suffered an injury at work or have contracted an industrial illness as a result. Your employer may also be prosecuted by the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) if it can be proved that they breached their obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.
Employee Health & Safety Obligations
As an employee you also have obligations. You are required to comply with your employer’s health and safety policy which will form part of your staff handbook if the company you work for employs five or more people. The policy will set out who is responsible for what, when they should do it, and how.
An employer can take disciplinary steps against an employee if they breach the policy. If you are facing disciplinary action for such an issue but you believe you are innocent, or the blame lies elsewhere, contact the employment law experts at HCB Solicitors for immediate advice. We have a proven track record in successfully defending such cases.
Health & Safety Responsibilities for Supervisors & Managers
If you are a supervisor, or in a managerial position, you may well have been given the responsibility of monitoring the health and safety of staff members under your remit. Being fully aware of the potential dangers that can arise in your particular workplace is very important, as is properly understanding your own responsibilities and the legislation that your employer must adhere to.
Your employer should provide you with the support and training you need to ensure the staff you supervise are able to conduct their roles safely and without risk of injury or illness. Ultimately, accountability lies with your employer and they should be helping you meet your responsibilities.
Health & Safety Whistle Blowing
If you are in a supervisory position and feel you are not being adequately supported in managing health and safety practices where you work which is resulting in hazardous situations, or you have reason to believe your employer is breaching health and safety legislation, you are entitled to bring this to their attention without fear of reprise.
If as an employee you feel you are being made to undertake your role in unsafe conditions, or use machinery or tools that are not fit for purpose, again you are entitled to bring attention to and take a stand against these dangerous situations without fear of dismissal.
Unfortunately, there have been countless cases where an employer has dismissed an employee for refusing to work in conditions they deemed unsafe. If this has happened to you, the employment law experts at HCB Solicitors may be able to assist you in bringing an unfair dismissal claim against your employer, providing you have completed the qualifying period for continuous service.
If, however, you have been dismissed specifically because you took certain steps to avoid an imminent health and safety risk, or made a public interest disclosure, then we may be able to pursue an automatic unfair dismissal claim, regardless of your length of service.
Health & Safety Advice for Employees
If you are facing issues at work that concern health and safety, you can contact us in complete confidence for advice. We have extensive experience and knowledge in this area, and offer a friendly, helpful service which starts with a no-obligation assessment of your case. Contact us today.
Recognised as a specialist employment team. Good, responsive, and the team keep an eye on what the client wants to achieve though a pragmatic approach.
Problems at work? Contact HCB Solicitors in complete confidence for sympathetic, specialist advice and to discuss the best way forward for everyone involved. Late night appointments on Thursdays.