Occupational Health & Safety
Our Occupational Health and Safety group handles a wide range of workplace health and safety issues. We devise and implement health and safety strategies, advise businesses on their legal obligations, conduct audits and risk assessments and protect businesses through comprehensive policies, procedures and training.
The plethora of health and safety legislation can be tricky for businesses to navigate. Given the potential for criminal liability arising when businesses fail to fulfil their obligations it is critical that health and safety is at the top of the boardroom agenda. The renewed spotlight and broader scope of health and safety responsibilities arising from the Covid-19 pandemic has triggered yet further challenges for employers.
We can help your business devise and implement a practical and commercial global health and safety strategy through our own expertise and through our membership of Ius Laboris, the leading global alliance of human resource law firms.
The type of things we can help clients with include:
- managing unexpected homeworking due to Covid-19
- advising on planning for a return to normal working after the Covid-19 lockdown ends
- crisis management
- compliance audits, reviewing and drafting of health and safety documentation
- risk assessments and advising on accident prevention methods
- accident investigation
- assisting clients with HSE enquiries, including how to deal with improvement and prohibition notices
- advising clients when prosecuting authorities, such as the police or HSE, are investigating an accident
- advising on new developments/issues in the health and safety arena and training clients on their health and safety obligations
- defending prosecutions for alleged health and safety breaches, including representing employers when being interviewed under caution
- representing clients at inquests
Workforce testing – FAQs for employers26 July 2021
Testing for Covid-19 is an option for employers hoping to encourage employees to return to the workplace, control the spread of the virus and increase customer and staff confidence. These FAQs cover the legal issues and considerations that employers should take on board when considering or using a testing programme.
Coronavirus vaccination - FAQs for employers26 July 2021
Employers are facing many difficult and untested employment law issues as the UK rolls out its Covid-19 vaccination programme. These FAQs cover whether an employer can make vaccination compulsory for its employees, alternatives to a mandatory requirement, time off for vaccine appointments, dealing with vaccine objectors, data privacy concerns and other issues.
Coronavirus - FAQs for employers on working from home19 July 2021
These FAQs look at the considerations for employers whose staff are working from home during the pandemic.
End of lockdown restrictions – what does the new workplace safety guidance say?15 July 2021
The government has updated its guidance on how to make workplaces Covid secure from 19 July 2021 when England moves to step 4 and most Covid-19 restrictions are lifted. This article sets out the most important issues for employers to consider in light of the new guidance.
How to mitigate the risk of employment claims about working during Covid-19 – a table08 July 2021
Our table for employers sets out the practical steps to take in order to reduce the scope for claims from employees arising out of coming to work during the Covid-19 pandemic.
End of lockdown restrictions – what should employers be thinking about?08 July 2021
The government has announced plans to lift the remaining Covid-19 restrictions in England on 19 July 2021, including the instruction to work from home where possible. This article looks at the immediate implications for employers and the issues for which they will need to decide on their approach and prepare.
How to manage occupational health compliance: Vince Toman comments for Supply Management14 May 2021
The pandemic has forced many employees to construct makeshift workstations, while battling family members for space. One year on, and with millions still at home, is there a looming threat of occupational health risks ahead?
High Court rules that ‘workers’ should be protected from health and safety detriment (UK)19 November 2020
The UK has failed to properly implement EU health and safety law by restricting protection from detriment on health and safety grounds to “employees”, the High Court has ruled in a recent case. The extension of such protection to the broader category of “workers” potentially increases employers’ exposure to Covid-related health and safety claims.