Health and Safety Regulator reports whistleblowing claims due to Covid failures
Almost half of Covid whistleblower reports to the UK’s independent health and safety regulator have been causes by failures of employers to implement social distancing rules, according to official statistics.
Of the 5,585 reports about coronavirus risks received by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) since March 2020, 48% raised concerns about social distancing at work. Similarly, nearly one in 10 complaints were about a lack of personal protective equipment.
A quarter of the reports about social distancing measures were made in October and November, according to the firm’s analysis, suggesting that despite wide guidance and being months into the pandemic some employers are still struggling to make workplaces Covid secure.
It is the employers’ duty to ensure workplace safety. Failing to take care of the health and safety of employees could breach employers’ express duties under health and safety legislation, as well as result in unfair health and safety dismissal claims and whistleblowing unfair dismissal claims..
Employers must ensure that they have robust policies in place and that they are regularly reviewed ensure they are being followed.The HSE is conducting spot checks to check that businesses are Covid secure and has powers to take enforcement action against both businesses and senior managers and directors for breaches.