Tuesday, February 09, 2010

UNISON Housing Association Annual Report 2009: Health & Safety

"This year has been dominated by fire safety and Gas deaths. Health & Safety is not only of the upmost importance to every member but it should also be a key organising tool in every workplace.

There can only be an effective safety management system in your workplace if management involve and engage with union safety reps. In most housing providers (not all) the health, safety and welfare of staff (never mind residents) is simply not taken seriously.

Risk assessments are often bought in off the shelf in “paper exercises” that front line staff never see; work related accidents and injuries are not recorded never mind investigated or reported to the enforcement authorities; staff that are physically threatened (or worse!) or seriously abused end up being blamed for not handling the situation better!

Enough is enough. We have greater legal powers and protections for safety reps than for stewards. Become a safety rep; get trained; get on the safety committees; demand consultation rights; regularly inspect all your work places; join the London regional safety rep network".

Anyone who wants to know more about getting involved and making their workplace better and safer let me know via the branch or ring me

(this "call to arms" is in our UNISON Housing Association Branch Annual Report 2009)

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