We all know that our employers have a duty to fulfill certain rights of the worker. One of the most important of those rights is our right to a healthy and safe work environment. Yet, if you fear that your employer isn’t taking those rights seriously, you don’t have to sit and take it. Instead, you can take matters into your own hands.
Address the problem
If you’re concerned that health and safety aren’t up to standard, then it’s best to start by beginning a dialogue. Discuss with your employer some of your concerns about the workplace. Whether it’s a fire risk or something like office furniture causing back pains. Most people are reasonable and will try to fix negligence when they know it’s a problem. If they fail to do so, that’s when you should consider formal action against them.
Offer to take on the role
Sometimes, an employer simply might not be able to put the proper effort towards maintaining workplace health and safety. You can help by delegating your own time to help them take care of it. Suggest getting health and safety training and acting as a safety officer within the business. Organizations like the Red Cross offer all kinds of inexpensive training. Your boss, if they’re reasonable, should be happy that you’re so willing to help make the workplace better.
Help look after the environment
The work environment itself can have a huge impact on how safe it is. Clutter and mess caused by employees can be a big danger in causing slips, trips, and falls, for instance. By taking care of your own mess and leading effective workplace housekeeping by example, you are doing your bit to tackle the risk of injury. Talk to your coworkers about it and you should find them hopefully as willing to help out.
Hold your employer accountable
If your employer isn’t reasonable, however, then the gloves come off. Don’t fear taking them to task legally on their responsibilities. Some fear reprisal, but you have legal protection against that. If you’re discriminated or harassed because of your actions, you can get legal help with that, too. If you’ve been injured due to the negligence of your employer, then look into getting help from people like Cogan and Power, PC.. Don’t let their substandard approach to health and safety go unchecked.
Be sure to take care of your mental health, too
Physical injury isn’t the only harmful effect of a negligent approach to health and safety. Your employer has just as much of a responsibility for taking care of the team’s emotional and mental health, too. For example, if a poor work-life balance or loss of sleep leads to stress or anxiety, they are duty-bound to help alleviate the situation. No-one should be expected to ‘cope’ with an environment of extreme stress.
Discussion, preparation, and maintaining standards are the best way to keep health and safety as a priority in the workplace. But if that fails, you shouldn’t fear taking your employer to task on it. Everyone’s right to safety in the workplace is important.