Health and Safety Commission and Institute of Directors set out advice for safety in the workplace

The Health and Safety Commission (HSC) and Institute of Directors (IoD) have published health and safety guidance for directors.

The guidelines, called "Leading health and safety at work", set out advice on how to plan, deliver, monitor and review health and safety in the workplace.

It includes a health and safety agenda for best practice and practical actions, a checklist of key questions on health and safety leadership policies, a summary of legal liabilities, and a list of resources and references for implementing the guidance.

Health and safety equipment

Health and Safety Minister Lord McKenzie of Luton said: "The health and safety of employees is a moral and ethical obligation for each and every employer and this must be driven home from board level. Only this way will we ensure that health and safety is taken seriously. This guidance clearly sets out the agenda for effective leadership of health and safety.”

New chair of HSC, Judith Hackitt, agreed the guidance should come from the top down but warned directors must also put the advice into action.

She said: “It is visible leadership from the top of an organisation which truly makes for an effective health and safety culture which in turn delivers good health and safety performance and much more. I am still confounded by the number of people who see health and safety as a barrier to doing things, as experience and evidence shows that the reverse is true.

“The challenge before us is changing behaviour. This guidance makes it clear what directors need to do but it is their action and delivery which will really count”.

The guidance was drawn up by an IoD led steering group with nominees from the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), Local Government Association (LGA), National Council for Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), NHS Confederation, Trades Union Congress (TUC) and Warwick Law School, University of Warwick.

You can find the guidelines at: