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Health and Safety at UK Organisations - Essay Example

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Health and Safety at UK Organisations

(CIPD, 1995, p. 4)
Safety is determined through work environment and policies towards which training, culture management programmes, individualised reward management systems and other range of employee involvement mechanisms, all operate not only towards achieving enhanced employee contribution, but the health concerns behind those contributions. The major reason behind the emergence of Occupational Health Safety (OHS) embedded in organisational infrastructure is the growing and alarming trend in work-related illness and injury, and the related costs to organisations and governments. Research suggests that every year the European nation, particularly UK is followed by a swift ratio of accidents or diseases at work according to which 10 million of the 150 million workers are affected each year. This result in the increment of direct-compensation costs estimated at 20 billion pounds per year (Agius, 2001). Work-related injuries and ill health cost the UK some between 3.5 billion and 7.3 billion annually i.e., equivalent to between 4 per cent and 8 per cent of all UK companies'.
The Industrial Revolution in Britain saw many consequences for ordinary working people in terms of their livelihood, family relationships and gender divisions in and outside work of which the major factor was ill health, injuries and deaths. The concern about health issues in work started in this period of Britain which ranged from 1740 to the 1850s, in which the need was felt for policies and legislation of Workers Act as workers no longer owned the tools of their trade. Employers while felt the need for housing, therefore industrial towns emerged with housing for workers which were located around the factories and mills. A new concept of 'traditional apprenticeship' emerged according to which employers felt the need for their labour of providing food, clothing and shelter.

On one hand employers provide facilities while on the other, they make the conditions worst for their labour by restricting the conditions of and hours of work for the working population, marked by overwork, malnutrition and subsequent illness. Disease and death were the added ingredients to that environment where the pursuit of profits over rode concerns for health.

Occupational health during the nineteenth century was largely linked with parliamentary reforms and the Public Health Movement in which the reforms spearheaded by the likes of Chadwick, Peel, Shaftesbury and Southwood-Smith. These personalities contributed to creating the platform for further developments in the twentieth century. (Wilkinson, 2001, p. 30) After several years of failure of implementing factories Act and Mines Act the British Government came up with HASAWA.

HASAWA initiated with the laissez-faire experiment in the nineteenth century, which was followed by a raft of regulation to create and protect the health and safety of UK workers. The experiment did not remain successful; regulations mushroomed and multiplied, driven forward by the increasing power of ...Show more


Health and safety organisations are characterised by providing occupational health safety, advice and safety training (2007a) irrespective of gender, class or age group. The Act 'Health and Safety at work' (HASAWA) is generally for the public as well as for UK organisations, regardless of the fact that one is employed, unemployed or belong to any profession…
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Health and Safety at UK Organisations essay example
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