Free health and safety conference in Scotland

22 April 2015


Scottish businesses will get the opportunity to learn more about how to protect their employees from the risks of being injured or made ill at work at a free educational conference being organised by the British Safety Council at the Health & Safety Scotland exhibition at the SECC Glasgow on 22-23 April 2015.

As the official education partner for the free-to-attend exhibition, the British Safety Council has arranged for expert speakers from the health, safety and legal worlds to provide advice to employers on some of the most effective ways of managing risks to people's health and safety at work. The presentations will cover topics such as recent and forthcoming changes to UK health and safety legislation; creating a positive safety culture at work; and ensuring the safe activities of a company's contractors.

Neal Stone, acting Chief Executive of the British Safety Council, who will be chairing both days of the conference, said: "The seminars will shine a light on some of the critical health and safety challenges facing businesses, the public and third sectors in Scotland today and seek to improve employers' understanding of how to prevent workplace injury and ill health, which is estimated to cost the UK £14.2bn each year."

One of the presentations on the first day, Wednesday 22 April, will be on how to ensure competence, commitment and leadership in health and safety. Dr Rosemary Campbell, an experienced health, safety and environmental consultant based in Scotland, will argue that in far too many UK businesses, basic and often inexpensive health and safety controls are lacking, and a dangerous "it'll never happen here" attitude persists towards workplace injuries and ill health.

Rosemary will explain the benefits of ensuring that all employees are committed to working safely, and will explain ways of challenging the "complacency which can arise from nothing very serious happening, yet". Day two, Thursday 23 April, will feature an interactive mock criminal health and safety trial hosted by leading lawyers from the Scottish offices of international law firm Pinsent Masons LLP.

A fictional construction firm and its managing director will be "prosecuted" following a serious workplace safety incident, and the MD, the injured worker and the investigating Health and Safety Executive inspector will all be cross-examined by real-life lawyers. The assembled audience will then be invited to deliver the "jury's verdict".

Other presentations over the two day event include an update on recent changes to health and safety legislation and trends in enforcement; advice on managing contractors; and guidance on carrying out surveys of workplace noise levels.