IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN BECOMING A HEALTH AND SAFETY REP – CONTACT YOUR BRANCH/SECTION AND LET THEM KNOW
The role of Napo Health and Safety representatives (H&S reps)
The rights of health and safety reps are laid down in the 1977 Safety Representatives and Safety Committees Regulations, which is part of the Health and Safety at Work Act.
Health and Safety Representatives have a key role to play in workplace health and safety. They work with employers on health and safety by representing their colleagues’ health and safety interests. Safety reps are accountable to their branch, and their work, such as around stress, workload and bullying often interlinked with industrial relations issues, so it is important that they work as part of a team with other branch reps.
Trade unions appoint H&S reps in recognised workplaces.
Health and Safety Representative have the right to:
- attend meetings of safety committees.
- investigating the causes of accidents
- investigate potential and actual hazards and dangerous occurrences;
- being consulted by the employer about issues relating to health and safety in the workplace
- investigate colleagues’ complaints
- present colleagues’ concerns to management
- carry out workplace inspections;
- time off with pay as is necessary to carry out those functions and reasonable facilities and assistance;
- paid time off for training as long as the training is ‘necessary’ and ‘reasonable’;
- receive information relevant to any matter that might impact upon health, safety and welfare of the people the safety rep represents
- inspecting documents relevant to safety in the workplace
- making representations to the employer
- receiving information from HSE (Health and Safety Executive ) inspectors, and representing members interest in meetings with HSE inspectors
- receiving information from the employer
- to be consulted on the planning and organising of any health and safety training
In some respects, Trade Union appointed H&S reps have more right and powers than Trade Union reps in the workplace.
The regulations state that no legal duties are placed on safety reps because of their functions and rights.This means that a safety rep has no greater liability in law for health and safety breaches than any other employee.