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HS Committees

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EstherFT
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HS Committees

Post by EstherFT »

Hi,

Taken from an HSE guide;

"In workplaces where the employer recognises trade unions and trade unions are recognised for collective bargaining purposes, the Safety Representatives and Safety Committees Regulations 1977 (as amended) will apply.
In workplaces where employees are not in a trade union and/or the employer does not recognise the trade union or the trade union does not represent those employees, not in the trade union, the Health and Safety (Consultation with Employees) Regulations 1996 (as amended) will apply."

I do not understand why the employer has to recognise or not trade unions. And also, HS representatives than are not workers elected by workers and/or designated by the company? First document where I see that Unions are involved in HS Committees. So now I am really confused. Can anyone help to clarify, please?

Thank you. ../.
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quality_somerset
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Re: HS Committees

Post by quality_somerset »

Hi Esther

Some companies choose to recognise trade unions, in fact many large employers will pay for staff who are solely employed in union work. These staff will be involved in investigating accidents, providing representation and help to those who have had an accident, and helping to formulate accident strategy within the company. The 1977 regs gives these union employees certain rights which are codified in law.

It was felt that those people who worked in companies without union representation were at a disadvantage. It was quite common for anyone who attempted to become a safety representative to be frozen out and denied resources. The 1996 allows those who are not in a union to take part in company activities regarding safety, and to be allowed access to some resources.

The 1996 regs does not confer as many rights as the 1977 regs.
EstherFT
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Re: HS Committees

Post by EstherFT »

Then in a Health and Safety Committee can be workers representatives from the unions and also chosen by workers? or it is one option or the other? And if they do not have the same rights, then when a committee has no union workers, the workers' representatives are allowed to "represent them less"?
You said 96 gives fewer rights than 77. Correct? So without the union, workers are at a disadvantage?
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quality_somerset
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Re: HS Committees

Post by quality_somerset »

Union members are normally chosen by those who are union members (i.e. those who subscribe to the union), those who are not part of the union will have no say on the Union delegates who sit on the company H&S committee. There could be the situation where some committee members are chosen under the 1997 regs, and some chosen under the 1996 regs.

Then when a committee has no union workers, the workers' representatives are allowed to "represent them less? Yes 1996 committee members have less rights that union committee members.
EstherFT wrote: Tue Mar 30, 2021 11:38 am You said 96 gives fewer rights than 77. Correct? So without the union, workers are at a disadvantage?
Yes basically, although less prevalent in the UK some companies make Union membership harder, in the US some companies have "union busters" who will try and stop workers forming unions in the workplace.

Regards

QS
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SteveDDon
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Re: HS Committees

Post by SteveDDon »

The other advantage of Union H&S reps is that they are trained in H&S by their unions, some to IOSH membership levels. (TechIOSH)

They can carry out inspections and investigations and have to be involved with any HSE investigations etc.

With Union H&S reps you get a second H&S team which if you work with them can help free up the company/Organisation H&S team to do the more strategic work.

Regards, Steve
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EstherFT
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Re: HS Committees

Post by EstherFT »

Thank you very much, Steve.
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