QSC Safety Expert, Marcell Foster, shares his thoughts on protecting young people in our workplaces.
Marcell comments: “All lives are valuable, but perhaps the most heartfelt stories I read are those of young people who have tragically lost their lives due to workplace accidents.
Earlier this month, I saw an article on Yahoo about a factory in Greater Manchester that was fined £150,000 and ordered to pay £15,000 in costs after a 16-year-old apprentice was killed when dragged in to an industrial lathe.
Whilst we have a duty to provide a safe working environment for all employees, in my view, some groups do require that extra level of attention and young people certainly fall in to this category.
Often inexperienced in their job role and naive to the potential dangers of a workplace, young people need structured, documented and verbal guidance to manage and avoid potential risks and hazards.
It’s vital to also remember, young people in the workplace aren’t just those in full or part time employment, but the seasonal/casual workers and work experience students who temporarily need to understand the importance of working safely.
The HSE has some useful guidance documents and I would encourage everyone to look at their website where you will find resources on safety for apprentices.
A moment of your time today could save a young life tomorrow and that must be worth something."