Role of Employer in Health and Safety Risk Prevention
As an employer, playing an active role in health and safety risk prevention is critical for a number of reasons. By reducing the potential for on the job injuries, you are increasing the likelihood that your business will stay productive and profitable as well as showing employees that you care about their well-being. But in addition to these very good reasons, it is also the law.
The Occupational Health and Safety Actoutlines a number of responsibilities that employers have when it comes to mitigating risk for their employees. The Actworks on a concept of an internal responsibility system (IRS) which engages employers, supervisors and employees. In order for the system to function properly, all parties must be actively engaged – and it starts at the top with the employer.
The responsibilities of the employer can be divided broadly into four main sections. These include:
- Ensuring a safe and well-maintained work area;
- Ensuring that employees have easy access to hazard information and safety training;
- Having an appointed representative for health and safety; and
- Following proper procedures in the event of an injury.
While the employer is primarily responsible for the health and safety of their employees, it is important for everyone in the organization to play their role. To help facilitate this, the employer should take the following steps:
- Take all reasonable precautions to protect workers and ensure a safe work environment;
- Build health and safety responsibilities into each employee’s job description;
- Ensure that all necessary safety equipment is available and that employees are trained on how to use it;
- Ensure that workers are aware of any safety hazards and that supervisors all have adequate health and safety training;
- Develop a formal written health and safety policy if the organization has five or more employees. This should be posted in an area where everyone can see it;
- Ensure that there is an active and effective joint health and safety committee. Names and locations of the members of this committee should be posted where all employees can see them.
Developing your health and safety policy and procedures
Because every organization is different, there is no one size fits all approach when it comes to developing your company’s health and safety policy and procedures. The Occupational Health and Safety Actdoes a good job of giving an overview but does not necessarily provide all the specifics that you will need. Depending on the nature of your business, you may also have industry-specific legislation, guidelines or best practices that you will need to follow.
Help for employers
The role of overseeing the health and safety requirements of a business and reducing risk where you can may feel like an overwhelming responsibility for employers. Fortunately, this is not something that you have to take on alone.
At TeksMed, we do more than manage disabilities after they have happened – we also help employers put the necessary procedures in place to help prevent injury in the first place. If you are an employer, it pays to make sure that you are fully compliant in your role of mitigating risk to your employees. Call us today at 1-877-850-1021.