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Derek Maylor, Chairperson

The Governments Environmental Audit Committee recent report on “Heatwaves, adapting to climate change” concluded that there should be an upper limit on temperature in the workplace as one of a range of measures. It was very disappointing then for IOSH to claim that this was unnecessary and a step to far.

The current HSE advice is to take all reasonable steps to achieve a comfortable temperature is just too loose and widely ignore leaving workers in intolerably hot environments. If all employers took reasonable steps excessively hot temperatures would not be an issue, they don’t, therefore the cross party committee of MPs decided they should recommend legislation.

Many people around the country have found out that the apartments they are living in is surrounded in cladding, similar to that on Grenfell Tower where 72 unsuspecting people were killed, and their homes could go up in flames just as quickly. Worse still, to make safe the homes they had saved for, bought and made a lifetime investment in, they are being told they have to pay for the removal and replacement dangerous cladding.

Developers chose the cladding as a cost effective means of building to make a profit, if there were to be a rebate we are sure that it wouldn’t be passed on to the people who spent their savings on a home. Over three hundred buildings with thousands of families affected.  

Even the Government have said building owners and developers have a moral responsibility to ‘do the right thing’ and cover the costs of their mistakes; the Government should force developers such as Durkan and Lendlease UK to do so and not just talk about it.

In the middle of last month Richard Judge left his role as Chief Executive of the HSE on Friday after being in charge for four years.

David Snowball, the HSE’s Head of Regulation and formerly the Director of Field Operations, will act in the role for the foreseeable future as it took over a year to appoint Richard. Under his tenure there have been highs such as the conviction rate upped, large increases in fines and individual punishment like custodial sentences; or lows like the failed Fee for Intervention and shedding of hundreds of front line staff.

The Coord are pleased that Martin Temple remains as Chair and we hope that both David and Martin will now press for proper resourcing for the HSE and a return to vigorous proactive enforcement, ensuring the is modern, effective and relevant. David has previously highlighting problems that need prioritising such as stress and health requiring a more holistic approach and the Coord will look to be part of that approach at every opportunity.

As always, and in conclusion; we aim to provide the best advice and representation for our members and to:

*Ensure a safe working environment
*Promote occupational health
*Help members raise safety concerns
*Advance industry best practice
*Provide representation at national meetings
*Raise issues with other safety or government bodies

Our greatest assets are our Union Safety Representatives and we fully support them in their work.

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