60,000 down tools in H&S initiative
Some 60,000 workers across construction and infrastructure firms are set to down tools this morning to highlight the issues of health and safety as well as mental health in the industry.
Stop. Make a Change is a cross-industry stand-down to tackle some of the key health and safety challenges faced by the sector. It is thought that this is the largest stand-down event ever undertaken in the UK construction sector.
Since it was launched in November 2016 more than 50 organisations – from the sector’s largest customers and contractors to small and specialist SMEs – have signed up to support the initiative.
More than 30 are making specific commitments that will be briefed during today’s events.
The commitments relate to four priorities that have been chosen by an industry expert panel – mental health, fatigue, plant safety and respiratory health. Each organisation has chosen commitments that will focus on improving performance within their business, supporting better outcomes for employees in each area.
As well as their own employees, organisations taking part are engaging with their supply chain partners, with more than 3,000 other companies expected to be involved in today’s events.
Stop. Make a Change has been supported by CITB’s Structured Fund as part of Infrastructure 21, a Civil Engineering Contractors Association-led project to help ensure that civils suppliers are primed ready for expected growth in the sector in the coming years.
CITB chief executive Sarah Beale said: “It’s great to see so many employers getting behind this important campaign. While we know that there has been sustained improvements in health and safety in recent years, there is much more to be done.
“Stop. Make a Change signals a new, heightened awareness of health and wellbeing issues among construction firms and their employees across the UK, which CITB is pleased to support.”
CECA chief executive Alasdair Reisner said: “When we first started planning Stop. Make a Change we hoped that we might get up to 10 companies and a few thousand employers involved in this first year. The response from industry has been tremendous, with a real desire to use the event as an opportunity to deliver positive change across the sector. We are looking forward to events today, and the health, safety and wellbeing improvements that they will drive.”
Organisations involved in Stop. Make a Change will provide feedback on the impact that the commitments that they have made have had upon their business, with best practice shared between all contributing organisations later this year.