For apprentices who are under 18, the employer has the same responsibilities as for other young workers. The responsibilities of a training provider, unless it is an Apprenticeship Training Agency (see below), should be considered to be the same as those of a work placement organiser – see ‘Training providers’ below.
Where Apprenticeship Training Agency (ATA) services are used to source, arrange and find a host for an apprenticeship, the Agency is the apprentice’s employer. The ATA and the host organisation should work together to ensure risks are effectively controlled. The health and safety toolbox temporary workers section provides more information on how organisations should cooperate to ensure the same level of health and safety protection is provided in the workplace for apprentices hosted via this arrangement as for host organisation’s employees.
Training providers include all those who arrange or fill apprentice vacancies. This includes third party sub contractors.and also includes those who are only involved in organising the off the job training element of the apprenticeship.
The employer has the primary responsibility for the health and safety of the apprentice and should be managing any significant risks. As the training provider, you should take reasonable steps to satisfy yourself that the employer is doing this
This does not mean trying to second guess an employer’s risk assessment or risk control measures, and you are not required to carry out your own workplace assessment
You can rely on past experience, for example, if the employer is familiar to you and they have a good track record on health and safety. You should keep checks in proportion to the environment:
Check the apprentice knows how to raise any health and safety concerns.
Work experience organisers guidance is relevant to you.
All apprentices undertaking modern apprenticeships are employed. Where a third party is involved in organising and/or funding the off the job training element of the apprenticeship, they would be primarily responsible for the health and safety of the apprentice while engaged in the off the job training element of the apprenticeship, and should be managing any significant risks. The employer would need to satisfy themselves that the third party was doing this.
Where a student who is still at school takes up a foundation apprenticeship and some time is spent with an organisation providing vocational work experience, this will be work experience and the employer will be primarily responsible for the health and safety of the student.