Health and safety legislation applies to all businesses, including major public sector employers such as the NHS, education sector, local authorities and central government. Most of HSE’s simplification initiatives will benefit these employers as well as private sector enterprises. However, HSE has undertaken some specific initiatives.
As part of the Sensible Risk Management campaign, HSE has been working with the Department for Children, Schools and Families and the Implementation Review Unit on a package for schools which will help them to focus on the real health and safety risks, and not on unnecessary paperwork. The launch of this package, which includes example risk assessments, good practice examples, and updated web-based guidance was delayed because of the swine flu pandemic. The package is now expected to be published at the end of the year.
HSE and senior police managers have also been seeking to improve clarity and understanding around what the Health and Safety at Work etc Act does and does not require of police services. The aim is to prevent excessive risk aversion and bureaucratic approaches to risk assessment – in line with HSE’s sensible risk approach. On 8 October 2009, HSE launched a policy statement entitled "Striking the balance between operational and health and safety duties in the Police Service".
This statement, a result of collaborative work between HSE and the Police Service, has been endorsed by the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) and Association of Chief Police Officers in Scotland (ACPOS), the Police Superintendents’ Association, the Association of Police Authorities and the Police Federation. HSE, ACPO and ACPOS will now work together, with other stakeholders including the National Policing Improvement Agency, to ensure that police operational guidance reflects the agreement outlined in the Striking the Balance statement.
Other initiatives include: