Health Safety & Welfare Management Policy

Last Updated:
September 30, 2022

Universal Skills Centre Ltd recognises that good health and safety management supports the safe delivery of quality services. We are committed to providing and maintaining a healthy and safe working environment for all our employees and associates, and in ensuring that their work does not adversely affect the health and safety of other people such as learners, visitors and other users of our services.

This policy applies to all areas of Universal Skills Centre and all individuals employed by the company, including employees, associates and apprentices. It also applies to any candidates and learners registered for a qualification and affected by the working practices of our employees.

Universal Skills Centre aim to:

•       Comply with requirements of relevant legislation

•       Identify hazards (the potential for harm), assess risks (the likelihood of that harm being realised) and manage those risks

•       Ensure that employees (and others as appropriate) are adequately informed of the identified risks and where appropriate receive instruction, training and supervision

•       Consult with employees’ on health and safety matters

•       Provide and maintain safe and healthy premises and work equipment

•       Ensure that employees are competent to do their tasks, providing training where necessary

•       Maintain appropriate health and safety management systems and arrangements

•       Monitor and review the effectiveness of the safety management systems and arrangements and where appropriate implement improvements


Directors have overall responsibility for:

•       Ensuring that the Company’s Health and Safety Policy is implemented effectively by its managers, supervisors and other employees

•       Ensuring that robust health and safety management systems and arrangements exist

•       Supporting the General Manager in meeting their health & safety responsibilities.


The Designated H&S Officer with responsibility for Health, Safety and Welfare is Michael Cottyn and is responsible for:

•       Directing and coordinating the activities of the Health and Safety and ensuring that all staff receive regular information and guidance

•       Ensuring corrective actions are implemented and preventive actions are in place to ensure continual improvement Is the appointed person, in accordance with the management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 2017

•       Shall advise Directors, Managers and employees on safety matters to assist them to fulfil their duties

•       Shall advise and co-ordinate the organisation’s programme of risk assessment, in accordance with the Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations and other relevant statutory provisions, i.e. COSHH, Manual Handling Regulations, Display Screen Equipment Regulations etc.

•       Shall advise on requirements of personal protective equipment, to be worn by employees and on the safety aspects of other equipment to ensure compliance with the Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations

•       Shall keep up to date with changes in legislation, approved codes of practice, working practices in relation to the organisation activities and new safety equipment and literature


The General Manager and the Leadership Management Team are responsible for:

•       Bringing the policy to the attention of employees through the induction and appraisal processes and ensuring that they and other employees have adequate levels of competency to complete their work tasks safely

•       Keep up to date on developments in health and safety legislation and practice

•       Revising the policy as necessary to ensure that it remains valid

•       Identifying the hazards and relevant legislation applying to the company and assessing the associated risks

•       Planning and implementing arrangements to eliminate or control significant risks and to comply with the relevant legislation by ensuring all work related hazards are identified and suitable and sufficient risk assessments are undertaken

•       Monitoring the above arrangements to ensure that they are working effectively recording the significant findings of their risk assessments in an appropriate manner

•       Ensuring that employees are involved and consulted on relevant health and safety matters in good time and ensure that their views are considered

•       Receive accident and incident reports, investigate and report under RIDDOR as appropriate, compile and analyse accident and incident data

All employees are responsible for:

•       Taking reasonable care of their own health and safety and that of others affected by their acts or omissions

•       Complete annual health and safety and fire safety training

•       Co-operating with the leadership management team so far as is necessary to enable the risks to be controlled and achieve compliance with relevant legislation

•       Using all work equipment and substances in accordance with the instruction and training received

•       Not intentionally misusing anything provided in the interests of health, safety and welfare

•       Reporting to their supervisor or manager any health and safety problem which they cannot deal with themselves or any shortcoming they consider to be in the health, safety and welfare arrangements. & Safety Policy V1.1 April 2020


In addition to the employee responsibilities, tutors and assessors are responsible for ensuring allocated apprentices and candidates are:

• Informed of this policy at induction

• Informed of health and safety risk assessments that could impact on them

• Notified of changes in health and safety policies and procedures that affect them

• Ensuring Apprentice/candidate workplace assessments are carried out appropriately

Apprentices/Candidates are responsible for:

•       Taking reasonable care of their own health and safety and that of others affected by their acts or omissions

•       Co-operating with Universal Skills Centre staff so far as is necessary to enable the risks to be controlled

•       Using all work equipment and substances in accordance with the instruction and training received

•       Not intentionally misusing anything provided in the interests of health, safety and welfare

•       Reporting to their tutor, supervisor or manager, depending on location, any health and safety problem which they cannot deal with themselves or any shortcoming they consider to be in the health, safety and welfare arrangements.

Apprentices/Candidates in the workplace

•       Only workplaces demonstrating a satisfactory approach to health & safety are used for meetings and assessments

•       We ask that candidates/students are allocated supervisors/mentors who can responsibly oversee their activities in a safe way

•       Health and Safety forms part of each learner review and is regularly discussed in meetings. Adverse findings are investigated and actioned appropriately

•       We require all assessors to have a DBS check prior to coming into contact with vulnerable groups


Duty of care

USC have a duty of care to its apprentices and learners. The requirements for apprentice care are outlined in the health and safety ESFA funding guidance this shows the following:

•       A health and safety risk assessment is carried for every apprentice

•       Apprentices and learners will not continue employment if USC deem the working environment to be un-safe. If this shows a risk assessment report will be done and the general manager will be notified

•       For every employer their health and safety policy will be reviewed by USC

•       USC will also ensure the employer is Gas safe and MOCoPA (Meter Operation Code of Practice Agreement) registered to stay in line with the apprenticeship SMART meter training


Accident and near miss reporting

All accidents and near misses must be reported to the General Manager/HR Manager.

Appropriate records will be held in the accident report book.

·       USC maintain an accident and reporting register including a register for apprentice ill health

·       The report is updated if any incident or illness has taken place and the employer will be notified within the same timeframe (no later than 24hours)

·       Riddor– where the incident is reportable to the H&SE, USC will ensure this is done within the required timeframe (no later than 24hours) and instructions will be followed as directed by the H&SE where required.

·       USC have a separate policy outlining COVID 19 (available upon request)


Lone Workers

Lone workers are categorised as employees working within the training centre separately from others(e.g. isolated training room) or those who are mobile working away from the training centre(e.g. carrying out observations or meetings in the learner’s workplace). It is our policy to give instruction & training to such employees which minimises or eliminates the risk of danger or harm as part of the induction process. All employees are asked to accept that they have a responsibility to take reasonable care of themselves and others affected by their working practices.



A risk assessment of the employee’s working environment is carried out by the Line Manager:

•       Immediately we are formally informed of the pregnancy at mid-term on return to work

•       The health & well-being of the employee is regularly monitored by the line manager throughout the pregnancy and adjustments made as necessary.


Fire drills & evacuation

•       There will be a fire drill twice a year

•       Nominated Fire Marshalls are displayed around centre

•       The Fire Marshall takes responsibility for coordinating evacuations and have the correct attire, so they are easily spotted

•       The evacuation meeting point is displayed prominently in reception areas

•       The fire alarm is tested once per week by the Centre Maintenance Engineer

•       The supply and maintenance of fire extinguishers is contracted out


First Aid

•       Nominated first aiders are displayed around centre

•       The centre has a first aid box with a standard range of supplies stored in the business management office

•       All accidents and usage of the first aid kit are managed in the accident book


Drugs and Alcohol

Universal Skills Centre have a strict zero tolerance policy against drugs and alcohol misuse or abuse. In instances where misuse or abuse of drugs or alcohol is suspect, a full investigation will take place by the General Manager. Misuse and abuse of drugs and alcohol will be treated as misconduct and the disciplinary procedure will be followed.

All apprentices are drugs and alcohol tested on day one of their course. The employer is present and organises the tests for their employees. The results will then determine if the apprentice is successful. Every apprentice is told on the induction interview that a drugs and alcohol test will take place inline with the training provider and employers’ policy and procedures. As apprentices will be working on live power and gas their health and safety is paramount and it is the Employers’ USCs duty to ensure they are not under the influence.



This policy is reviewed annually by the health and safety officer and the leadership management team.

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