An Open letter to members of the House of Lords

22 04 2013

Dear Member of the House of Lords,

Prospect is a trade union that represents staff in the health and safety field, and we have been taking careful note of the deliberations in both Houses on Civil Liability in the event of a health and safety offence in the workplace.

We very much welcome the decision in the House of Lords to oppose the element that was placed in the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Bill (without consultation) to remove a core protection for workers which has been in place for 114 years.

Despite the vote to oppose the Clause 61 (now Clause 62) it was overturned in the Commons and will be deliberated upon again on Monday 22nd April in the Upper House. Prospect and many other stakeholders with an interest in health and safety fear that these changes will result in injured workers losing the right for compensation in the event of a breach of health and safety statutory duty by a negligent employer. It will tip the balance towards the negligent employer by requiring greater proof of negligence. As a consequence this will also shift costs to the state, with the NHS picking up the tab for the rehabilitation of injured workers.

The Government claims its proposals pursue recommendations made by their independent advisor, risk management academic Professor Löfstedt. However this week Professor Löfstedt  has publicly and more strongly restated his concerns that the Government has gone too far.

With this in mind we would urge you to attend the Chamber on Monday and vote to protect these important measures that have been in place for 114 years and are set to be removed by an ill-thought through clause.

Vial the prospect Website

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1st March Work Your Proper Hours Day – £29.2 billion of free work

1 03 2013

Over 5 Million workers do unpaid over time the TUC estimates that this is worth almost 30 Billion £ to UK employers.

This year, Work Your Proper Hours Day is 1 March. this is the date at which the average worker who did all their unpaid hours at the start of the year would start getting paid. The aim of the day is to remind everyone – employees and employers – about the value of unpaid work and that flexibility should be a two way process. This chimes with Prospect’s Work Time Your Time campaign which gives people tools to take stock and help regain a sense of control.

We know our members put in the extra hours when the job demands it – across the economy the TUC estimates that this amounts to 2 billion extra days a year. We also know that many of our members are under pressure to work longer hours with cuts in resource and an ever faster pace of change and work. That impacts on your work life balance and well-being. Getting a balance that works for you is not just good for your health but evidence continues to show that if people are well and happy their performance improves.

Here are some simple ideas about things you might want to do to mark Work Your Proper Hours Day

  • Make sure you take a proper lunch break – away from your desk.
  • Try to leave work on time – evidence shows that people are more likely to finish on time when they have something to go to, so why not fix up to go out with family or friends after work – you could even think about doing something with colleagues.
  • Take some time to check out our Work Time Your Time campaign pages. There’s a quick calculator to work out your hourly rate, an hours tracker spreadsheet, and lots of tips and simple ideas to get you thinking about changes you could make to get a work life balance that works for you.




European Health and Safety week – musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs).

17 10 2007

This year’s European Health and Safety week is focusing on musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs). The aim of the week is to encourage employers and safety reps to focus on activities aimed at prevention of MSDs.

 

MSDs are the most common form of ill-health problem at work with work related MSDs affecting 1 million people in Great Britain alone each year. Problems include back pain, work-related neck and upper limb disorders (ULDs), including repetitive strain injuries, and lower limb disorders. Raising awareness, prevention and management are all key factors in reducing MSDs.

Resources for safety reps

Resources for safety reps on musculoskeletal issues are available at the HSE web site http://www.hse.gov.uk/campaigns/euroweek/safetyrepresources.htm These include checklists and a body mapping tool and slips assessment tool. There are also posters available on the website for this and the HSE 2006 Better Backs campaign.