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Health and safety obligations for employees

Employers are required by law to offer a safe and healthy workplace. As an employee, you have rights and responsibilities for your own and your coworkers’ safety. This article will explain what these obligations are and how to fulfill them.

Your legal rights

Your legal rights as an employee to work in a safe and healthy environment are unassailable and cannot be amended or deleted by your employer. The following are the most important of these rights:

  • As much as possible, to ensure that any threats to your health and safety are effectively managed.

  • They should be provided with free personal protective and safety equipment.

  • If you have reasonable concerns about your safety, you should stop working and leave your work area without being reprimanded.

  • You should notify your employer of any health and safety concerns.

  • People should take breaks throughout the working day.

  • to take time off from work during the working week.

  • to have an annual paid vacation.

Your accountability

As an employee, your primary tasks are as follows:

  • to take reasonable precautions for one’s own health and safety.

  • When handling machinery, avoid wearing jewelry or loose clothing if feasible.

  • If you have long hair or wear a headscarf, keep it tucked out of the way since it could become entangled in machinery.

  • You must take reasonable precautions not to endanger other people—coworkers and members of the public—by what you do or do not do in the course of your work.

  • You should work with your employer to ensure you receive proper training and understand and adhere to the company’s health and safety rules.

  • You are not to tamper with or abuse anything supplied for your health, safety, or welfare.

  • Your employer may need to adjust the way you work if you report any injuries, strains, or illnesses as a result of your job.

  • Please notify your employer if anything happens that may jeopardize your ability to work.

  • Because your employer has a legal duty to ensure your health and safety at work, they may need to suspend you while they find a solution to the issue or problem, although you will usually be paid if this happens.

  • If you drive or operate machinery, it is your responsibility to inform your employer if you take drowsy medication; if you do, they should temporarily transfer you to another employment position if one is available.

Personal safety equipment

Your company is required to supply you with free personal protective equipment (PPE). You must use this correctly and adhere to the training and instructions provided.

Failure to wear PPE properly may result in disciplinary action or even dismissal in some jobs. You can, however, refuse to wear PPE if it endangers your safety, such as if it doesn’t fit properly.

Inquire with your employer or the firm’s safety representative about the proper size.

What should you do if you are worried?

If you have issues about your workplace’s health and safety, you should first raise them with your employer or immediate boss. Your safety representative may be your initial point of contact if you have one. If you have an employee representative, such as a trade union representative, they may also be able to assist you.

Your employer should not expose you to unnecessary dangers at work, and if you have raised concerns without receiving a response,

Health and safety inspectors have the authority to enforce the law, and if you adopt this course of action, your employer cannot reprimand you or disadvantage you in your employment.

This could include not paying you for time you refused to work due to unsafe working conditions or passing you over for advancement.