Health & Safety Policy

1. Health and Safety Policy Statement

Vision Training (North East) Ltd recognises that good health and safety management supports the safe delivery of quality services.  We are committed to providing and maintaining a healthy and safe working environment for all our employees, and in ensuring that their work does not adversely affect the health and safety of other people such as candidates/learners, visitors and other users of our services.

2. Health and Safety Policy Purpose/Aims

  • To comply with requirements of relevant legislation;
  • To identify hazards (the potential for harm), assess risks (the likelihood of that harm being realised) and manage those risks;
  • To ensure that employees (and others as appropriate) are adequately informed of the identified risks and where appropriate receive instruction, training and supervision;
  • To consult with employees’ and/or their representatives on health and safety matters;
  • To provide and maintain safe and healthy premises and work equipment;
  • To ensure that employees are competent to do their tasks, providing training where necessary;
  • To maintain appropriate health and safety management systems and arrangements;
  • To monitor and review the effectiveness of the safety management systems and arrangements and where appropriate implement improvements.

3.      Scope

This policy applies to all areas of Vision Training (North East) Ltd and all individuals employed by the company, including employees, contractors and apprentices.  It also applies to any candidates and learners registered for a qualification and affected by the working practices of our employees

4.      Responsibilities

The Board of Directors have overall responsibility for

  • Ensuring that the Company’s Health and Safety Policy is implemented effectively by its managers, team leaders and other employees
  • Ensuring that robust health and safety management systems and arrangements exist
  • Supporting the Centre Manager in meeting their health & safety responsibilities.

 The Cente Manager and the Management Team (as exists) are responsible for:

  • Bringing the policy to the attention of employees through the induction and appraisal processes and ensuring that they and other employees have adequate levels of competency to complete their work tasks safely;
  • Keep up to date on developments in health and safety legislation and practice
  • Revising the policy as necessary to ensure that it remains valid;
  • Identifying the hazards and relevant legislation applying to the company and assessing the associated risks (see risk assessment policy);
  • Planning and implementing arrangements to eliminate or control significant risks and to comply with the relevant legislation by ensuring all work related hazards are identified and suitable and sufficient risk assessments are undertaken;
  • Developing local procedures and safe working practices
  • Monitoring the above arrangements to ensure that they are working effectively;
  • Recording the significant findings of their risk assessments in an appropriate manner;
  • Ensuring that employees are involved and consulted on relevant health and safety matters in good time and ensure that their views are considered;
  • Reviewing the health and safety performance of the company annually and provide a summary of that review to the board of directors;
  • Reporting to the Board of Directors any situation where the standards set out in the Company’s General Statement of Health and Safety Policy cannot be implemented.
  • Receive accident and incident reports, investigate and report under RIDDOR as appropriate, compile and analyse accident and incident data (see accident at work policy);

 All employees are responsible for:

  • Taking reasonable care of their own health and safety and that of others affected by their acts or omissions;
  • Co-operating with the management team so far as is necessary to enable the risks to be controlled and achieve compliance with relevant legislation;
  • Using all work equipment and substances in accordance with the instruction and training received;
  • Not intentionally misusing anything provided in the interests of health, safety and welfare; and
  • Reporting to their supervisor or manager any health and safety problem which they cannot deal with themselves or any shortcoming they consider to be in the health, safety and welfare arrangements.

 Additional to employee responsibilities Team Leaders are responsible for:

  • Carrying out risk assessments for their assessment teams such as DSE, Lone Working and Manual Handling. 

Additional to employee responsibilities the business support manager is responsible for:

  • Carrying out risk assessments for the business support team such as DSE, Lone Worker and Manual Handling
  • Carrying out premise risk assessments 

Additionally to employee responsibilities assessors are responsible for:

  • Ensuring allocated candidates/learners are:
  • Informed of this policy at induction
  • Informed of health and safety risk assessments that could impact on them
  • Notified of changes in health and safety policies and procedures that affect them
  • Ensuring candidate/learner work place assessments are carried out appropriately (see risk assessment policy) 

5.      Policy Implementation – Procedures

 5.1          Candidates/Learners in our assessment centre

Are introduced to premises layout, health & safety requirements, fire drills, welfare provision and first aid procedures during induction or in their first session in the building.

 5.2          Candidates/Learners in the workplace

  • All workplaces are risk assessed and rated low, medium or high risk. Only workplaces demonstrating a satisfactory approach to health & safety are used for meetings and assessments.
  • We ask that candidates/students are allocated supervisors/mentors who can responsibly oversee their activities in a safe way.
  • H & S forms part of each learner review and is regularly discussed in meetings. Adverse findings are investigated and actioned.
  • We require all assessors to have a DBS check prior to coming into contact with vulnerable groups.

 5.3          Accident and near miss reporting

See Accident at Work Policy

 5.4          Lone Workers

  • Lone workers are categorised as employees working within a training centre separately from others (e.g. isolated training room) or those who are mobile working away from their training centre (e.g. carrying out observations or meetings in the candidates/students workplace).
  • It is our policy to give instruction & training to such employees which minimises or eliminates the risk of danger or harm as part of the induction process.
  • All employees are asked to accept that they have a responsibility to take reasonable care of themselves and others affected by their working practices.
  • The risk assessment in regards to lone working is completed by the employee’s line manager and is evidenced in writing and retained in the head office.
  • The HSE “Working Alone in Safety” booklet is made available in the training room.

5.5          Maternity

  • A risk assessment of the employee’s working environment is carried out by the Line Manager:
    • immediately we are formally informed of the pregnancy
    • at mid -term
    • on return to work
  • The health & well-being of the employee is regularly monitored by the line manager throughout the pregnancy and adjustments made as necessary.

5.6          Fire drills & evacuation

  • There will be a fire drill once a year
  • The Fire Marshall takes responsibility for co-ordinating evacuations. The identity of the marshall is the business support manager.
  • The evacuation meeting point is displayed prominently in reception areas.
  • The fire alarm is tested regularly by the landlord/building manager
  • Supply and maintenance of fire extinguishers is contracted out. See extinguishers for latest supplier.

 5.6          First Aid

  • The Business Support Manager is the Centres appointed person
  • The centre has a first aid box with a standard range of supplies stored in the business support office.

 Specific Health and Safety Procedures are written under their separate headings and include (but not limited to):

  •  Manual & Handling Policy
  • Accidents at Work Policy
  • Lone Working Policy
  • Risk Assessment Policy

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