What will this do for my organisation?

Your representative should be looked upon as a ‘critical friend’. This is someone who asks questions about practice or developments in supportive, yet challenging ways.

What do I need to do?

You need to;

  • provide your representative with enough information to allow full and effective participation;
  • consult them on potential hazards and dangerous occurrences;
  • include them when dealing with health and safety inspectors; and
  • attend health and safety committee meetings.

Union representatives will also be involved with investigating incidents and complaints, and workplace inspections. For more information see the link below.

It is good practice to give non-unionised representatives the same functions as union reps. For example involve reps in investigating incidents and complaints as well as conducting undertaking workplace inspections.

How can you do it?

  • try and consult regularly, even if it is informal.
  • arrange specific meetings for key issues such as high risk areas; proposed changes in the workplace and health surveillance issues.
  • arrange for health and safety to be part of other scheduled meetings (eg production meetings).
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