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New strategy will address current and future OSH issues, says IOSH

Institution of Occupational Safety and Health

3 min read Partner content

A new five-year health and safety strategy which launches today (Monday 29 February) will help to address current and future issues, according to the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH).

Six themes are covered by the strategy, which is called ‘Helping Great Britain Work Well’.

The launch follows a nationwide engagement programme led by the HSE since the start of the year, which included roadshow events to allow employers and employees to have their say.

The strategy themes are:

  • Acting together – recognising that health and safety is an important part of everyone’s role within an organisation.

  • Tackling ill health – raising awareness of the harm, costs and preventability of work-related ill health such as cancer.

  • Managing risk well – demonstrating that successful organisations understand that sensible and proportionate risk management really delivers for a business.

  • Supporting small businesses – making support available to help small organisations fulfil their obligations.

  • Keeping pace with change – recognising that Great Britain needs to develop a high-quality capability to anticipate future challenges.

  • Sharing our success – looking at how Great Britain’s success in improving occupational safety and health can be applied overseas.

IOSH played a part in the engagement programme. The institution’s response highlighted five areas – occupational health, including work-related cancers; competence, leadership and worker engagement across organisations; demographics, including ageing workforces and migrant workers; globalisation, including health and safety within supply chain management; and new and emerging technologies.

Shelley Frost, IOSH’s executive director – policy, said: “IOSH welcomes the new strategy, which is closely aligned to IOSH’s strategic priorities.

“It recognises the key opportunities to address the current and future OSH issues and we support in particular the focus on collaboration across all stakeholder groups to effect change. 

“We look forward to working closely with HSE to deliver our shared ambitions, disseminate best practice and support others in advancing health and safety standards across all industries."

Other parties which were involved in discussions about the strategy included local and central government, unions and other regulators.

Dame Judith Hackitt DBE, chair of the HSE, said the engagement programme had shown a widespread “desire to get involved in driving improvement in all parts of the system”.

She said: “We now need to see real ownership of this strategy – by the many, not just a few. This is not HSE’s strategy; it is for the whole of the system and everyone in it.

“We have an unprecedented opportunity to keep building a 21st-century, world-class occupational health and safety system that will help Great Britain work well.

“If we can all come together to help achieve these things, maintain the gains made in safety, and seize the opportunity to give health the same priority, it will help improve productivity, keep business costs down, help keep workers safe and well, and protect members of the public.”

Justin Tomlinson MP, Minister for Disabled People, said: “It is vital that everyone is able to play their part in keeping Britain’s economy running as effectively and efficiently as possible.

“I was impressed with the energy and drive that has gone into creating the new strategy, involving stakeholders at events held around Great Britain and discussions over social media. It is now vital that the impetus is maintained and that the theme on ownership is taken up by everyone in the system. If that happens, we really will all be helping Great Britain to work well.”

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