Did you know in 2017/18 30.7 million working days were lost due to work-related ill health or injury in Great Britain? (HSE)

As an employer you have the primary responsibility for your employees' health and safety in the workplace. Health and safety in the workplace aims to stop employees getting ill or injured through work.

Your responsibility

As an employer there are certain things that you should do for your employees to ensure your compliance with health and safety laws:
  • You must, with a risk assessment, decide what risks there are to your employees' health and safety, and which precautions should be put in place to mitigate or completely eliminate these risks. These measures could include an alternative method of work, installing safety equipment, signs, personal protective equipment (PPE), environmental monitoring processes, gas alarms, and so on.
  • You must explain how risks to your employees are being controlled and who the immediate responsibility for controlling these risks belongs to. This needs to be communicated in a way that is easily understandable by all employees. 
  • You, as an employer, are responsible for consulting with health and safety representatives and all employees regarding protecting everyone in the workplace from harm. This means that you must consult with employees regarding how to protect them from anything that you have assessed as a potential risk in the workplace. You must also consider any concerns raised or suggestions made by your employees.
  • You must provide your employees with the free health and safety training that they need to do their job safely and correctly. You must also supply employees with equipment and protective clothing to ensure that they are properly looked after and protected whilst at work.
  • You must provide your employees with adequate first aid facilities, toilets, washing facilities and drinking water, the number of these should be calculated by doing assessments of the workplace and will vary depending on the number of staff at the company and the nature of the work taking place there.
  • All employers are responsible for reporting any injuries and fatalities to the HSE Incident Contact Centre. You must also report all other injuries, diseases and dangerous incidents on the HSE website.
  • You must have appropriate insurance to cover employees in case of illness or injury through work, you must display the insurance certificate where it can be easily visible by all employees. This should be in a frequently used communal area, to ensure all employees have access to read it. 
  • You should work with other employers or contractors that share the workplace or provide employees in to the workplace to ensure that everyone’s health and safety is protected at all times.
  • You must either display a health and safety law poster or provide health and safety law leaflets to your employees.

In summary

Health and safety laws state that you, as an employer, have primary responsibility for your employees' health and safety. There are clear guidelines on what you must do and the responsibilities that you hold. Click here to find out more about what role your employees play in health and safety in the workplace.