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Consulting with Employees - Health & Safety

Consulting Employees

The employer must consult his employees in good time over matters relating to their health and safety at work. He must do this:

  • directly with the employees concerned; or
  • through representatives of employee safety elected by the employees concerned; and
  • through safety representatives appointed by relevant trade unions.

The employer may choose between either of the first two methods of consultation as regards employees not represented by a trade union appointed safety representative. The employer must consult with trade union appointed safety representatives as regards employees represented by them, whether or not he also consults directly with those employees themselves.

Matters For Consultation

The employer must consult any of these with regard to matters that must include:

  • the introduction of any measure at the workplace which may substantially affect the health or safety of employees;
  • his arrangements for appointing competent persons to assist him in complying with health and safety law.
  • nomination of competent persons for implementing his evacuation procedure;
  • health and safety information he provides;
  • the planning and organising of health and safety training;
  • the health and safety consequences of planning;
  • introducing new technologies into the workplace.

The employer must also consult trade union appointed safety representatives on any additional matters with the view to the making and maintenance of arrangements to enable him and his employees to co-operate effectively in:

  • promoting and developing measures to ensure employees' health and safety at work;
  • checking the effectiveness of such measures.

Facilitating Effective Safety Representation

The employer must ensure that:

  • employees with safety representation functions are provided with adequate facilities, training and paid time off for training and performance of their functions;
  • no detriment is suffered by an employee participating (or proposing to participate) in an election of any representative of employee safety;
  • no detriment is suffered by an employee carrying out (or proposing to carry out) safety representation functions.

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