Industry set to down tools in H&S initiative

20 February 2017

Construction and infrastructure firms are set to down tools on the morning of 18 April to highlight the issues of health and safety as well as mental health in construction.

The UK-wide health initiative, Stop. Make a Change has been developed by some of the industry’s leading contractors and customers working with the Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA).

It has the backing of a number of firms including Galliford Try/Morrison Construction, Clancy Docwra, Hochtief and Ferrovial Agroman. It is also backed by SMEs and industry bodies.

Companies involved in Stop. Make a Change will make commitments relating to four key health, safety and wellbeing topics – mental health, plant safety, fatigue, and respiratory illness.

Each business will decide on its own commitments and will use the event to brief staff and suppliers about them. It is intended that good practice developed through the campaign will be shared among supporters through a guide published later this year.

CECA chief executive, Alasdair Reisner, said: “It is fantastic that there has been such strong support from across the industry for Stop.Make a Change. When industry was developing the idea, it was recognised that we would be able to achieve the greatest impact if it was taken up widely, bringing best practice from clients, contractors and suppliers nationwide.

“We are looking forward to seeing what each organisation is doing to drive change on each of the four topics, and are keen to share this as best practice later this year.”

CEMEX health and safety director, Andy Taylor, said: “Health, safety and well-being is our number one priority and we join many other high-profile companies in the infrastructure sector who are dedicated to making it their priority on 18 April.”


When I talk about well being and other health and safety factors, I usually have a site based audience. The change needs to happen in the board room downwards, nice sentiments, but the people on the ground need support from the higher chain, from experience, to make it happen.

J Sandland MCIOB MRICS FAPS, 20 February 2017

All these big firms like to pay lip service to Health and safety not so much to the well being of the work force. If it is going to cost the shareholders a drop in their dividends then I know who will lose out.
Currently bricklaying is still in the stone age as far as improvements to working conditions are concerned and getting worse.
For years now I have not seen an H&S inspector actually come up on to the scaffolding and engage in conversation any of the workforce as to how they perceive their day to day problems carrying out their work, the biggest of which is actually the scaffolding.
It may be fine to look at sturdy and strong (in most cases if it hasn't dropped because the guns they use have not got enough torque) but as a platform to produce work fit for the NHBC it is usually a non starter forcing men to become contortionists laying the foundations for muscular skeletal problems in later years forcing an already dwindling work force from the industry earlier due to the industry not looking after their well being but their bank balances.

R.New, 21 February 2017

Leave a comment