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Do you know your health and safety responsibilities?

It’s part of your employer branding and the broader picture you present towards the public. If accidents and injuries occur, this can negatively affect your image, turning both customers and prospective employees away from your business.

As a starting point, you should ensure that you have up-to-date employers’ liability insurance – a minimum of £5 million cover, though £10 million is more normal and depending on the nature of your business you may need more. (There can be heavy fines if this expires.) This, of course, protects you in the worst cases, but your responsibility is to do everything you can to avoid injuries and illness. Amongst other things, you should:

Discuss health and safety with your employees, listening to any concerns they have and addressing them to the extent that is possible.
Conduct regular risk assessments, identifying both potential hazards and the severity of any injury that could arise from them, before mitigating the threat.
Note any processes you have put in place to address risks, and ensuring that employees are aware of any potential risks.
Make sure there are enough qualified first aiders, and that first aid kits and any other necessary equipment are always well stocked and readily available. There must always be a trained first aider in your building, and every employee should know where they can find assistance if they need it.
Keep an accident book on the premises and record every incident in it. This is a legal requirement.

You will need to keep up with any changes in the law and ensure that you and any designated employees are up to date with training.

These are just some of the things you will need to bear in mind. Depending on your business, health and safety requirements may be more complex and demanding. If in doubt, consult a qualified expert.

Do you have questions about your responsibilities in the workplace? Talk to us. We are experienced employment law specialists and can give you the expert advice you need. Call 01302 320621 or email

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