Branch Secretary :

Too hot for work?

Action to protect workers



Members but especially reps should be aware that workers do not have to suffer the extremes of temperature in silence. Health and Safety legislation exists to ensure that employers take action to protect workers from uncomfortable working conditions.



Guidelines suggest that workplace temperatures should range between 16 - 24 degrees with adjustments if the work undertaken is physical. Once temperatures hit the 24-mark employers need to put measures in place to reduce the heat or mitigate its worst effects such as moving office furniture to cooler places, providing extra breaks, water and where workers are conducting work outside these measures would extend to providing sunscreen and extra breaks.



Temperature agreement



Does your employer have a workplace temperature agreement in place? If the answer is no then you should definitely get that put on the agenda. Where the temperature exceeds 30 degrees workers are definitely unsafe and should remove themselves from danger by vacating the workplace. If this is necessary, try to ensure that the action is collective and definitely contact your Regional Official or branch officer.



Additional steps may need to implemented for disabled workers or those experience menopause symptoms. It may be worth conducting a quick survey of your members to ensure that you are aware of their particular needs or equally it might be worth putting out a union notice to inform workers of their rights under s44 of the Employment Rights Act as well as Health and Safety regs. You should also put something up on your union notice board and if you don't have one....get one put up.


You can access further information by visiting this useful link



Or this more detailed briefing from Unite.



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