We have received the following information from Chris Packham, Enviroderm Services which we thought may be useful to OH nurses.
"It is our intention that during 2015 we will be producing a
series of short monographs on specific aspects of the prevention of damage to
health due to workplace skin exposure. These will be e-mailed to those wishing
to receive them. If you wish to be on our list please let me know by
sending me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
The first two of these monographs are given below. I hope that you
find this of interest.
Just a word of caution. These monographs are
not intended as a comprehensive guide. The aim is to draw attention to some of
the less well known factors that should be included in any occupational skin
management system, also to make recipients aware of new information that could
be relevant as this becomes available. Our knowledge about the interaction
between the skin and the working environment is constantly expanding. Staying up
to date is important. We invest considerable time and money in ensuring that we
do and these monographs will hopefully play some part in ensuring that others
can do the same."
be in the air, even at work, so how better to show the love to your workforce
than to talk to them?
out to talk to your employees about the human factors that affect how they do
their job safely is a great way to demonstrate your commitment to health &
safety and show them that you care. The more you talk about safety, the more
likely it is you will engage your workforce in safety becoming 'part of the
The hard part is often knowing
what to say - HSL's Safe Deal playing cards make starting the conversation easy
- a full deck of 52 cards each containing information and questions relating to
four key areas of human factors in health & safety - Leadership, Behaviour
Change, Being Human and Safety Culture.
Lewis has extracted the following from a round robin from a respected
law firm called Lewis Silkin. She felt that it would be useful for our
It will become a
Criminal Offence to require Employees or job applicants to make enforced subject
access requests for the employer. Unless the person is to work in a defined and
regulated sector enforced criminal record checks will become unlawful
want information about the criminal records of job applicants or employees for
various reasons. One way of obtaining such information is to require an
individual to make an “enforced” subject access request under the Data
Protection Act 1998 (DPA) in order to get a copy of their own criminal record.
The practice of requiring individuals to reveal their criminal records is at
odds with the right to privacy and the rehabilitation of offenders, so enforced
subject access has long been a contentious issue.
It will soon
be a criminal offence for employers to require employees or job applicants to
make enforced subject access requests and then provide the employer with the
results. This is because of a previously dormant section in the DPA that will
come into effect on 1 December
cannot apply themselves for criminal records checks on employees or applicants,
except in specific circumstances. These are primarily where a person will be
working with children or vulnerable adults or in specific regulated sectors, in
which case the employer can and in some cases must get information on the
person’s criminal history. Some employers therefore make it a precondition of
employment that the individual must obtain information on their own criminal
record from the police, by making a subject access request, and then pass on the
Up until now,
this practice has been discouraged by the Information Commissioner’s Office
(ICO) but has not technically been unlawful. Section 56 of the DPA makes it an
offence to require a person to make a subject access request and reveal the
result, but implementation of this provision was delayed by the Government. It
will now be fully in force from 1 December 2014. Anyone convicted of the
offence will face a fine of up to £5,000 in the magistrates’ court or an
unlimited fine in the Crown Court. The ICO has indicated that it intends to
prosecute those who continue to enforce subject access requests, in an effort to
stamp out this practice.
Why the new
rule? The core
issue is that subject access requests provide far more information than an
applicant is legally required to disclose. For example, unless they are working
with children or vulnerable adults, or are applying for a job covered by the
Rehabilitation of Offenders (Exceptions) Order 1975, applicants do not have to
give information about “spent” convictions – i.e. where a certain period of time
has elapsed since the conviction without the perpetrator re-offending. A spent
conviction is “wiped” from an individual’s criminal record and he or she is
entitled to hold themselves out as someone who has never been the subject of
subject access requests ride roughshod over these boundaries. The response to a
general subject access request will show spent convictions as well as live ones
and will also show police reprimands, warnings and cautions. While it is
unlawful to refuse to employ someone because of a spent conviction, there is no
specific legal remedy for anyone who is forced to reveal their full criminal
history and then refused employment because of information disclosed. Jonathan
Bamford, head of strategic liaison at the ICO, has called enforced subject access an “unsavoury practice” that
undermines the rehabilitation of offenders.
this mean for employers? The new rules
will not affect employers’ duties to carry out their own checks on applicants
for jobs which are covered by the 1975 Exceptions Order. For jobs that do not
fall within that Order, however, employers should urgently review their
recruitment practices – especially if they make offers of employment conditional
on the production of a clean criminal record.
will risk a criminal conviction if they seek to force an applicant to provide
their criminal record by making a subject access request. An alternative option
is simply to ask applicants to disclose their criminal records voluntarily.
Employers should explain to individuals that they do not need to disclose spent
convictions - and there is no certainty they will provide accurate information.