Human Resource Management Assignment Case Study – Health & Safety Issues at Cafe Nero INTRODUCTION In this report I will advise the Manager at Cafe Nero of the procedural and legal issues to follow in the event of an employee having a ‘slip and trip’ accident at the workplace. This report will outline the relevant legislation acts applicable to both the injured staff member and the cafe manager. After covering and identifying the relevant parts of legislation, it will enable me to state the applicable procedure methods to consider in the case study. . 1 Legal Issues Legislation acts This incident includes the practicality of two issues – 1. 1 Legal and 1. 2 Procedural. I will discuss the different legislations that protect employees in a situation of Health & Safety, which will help both employees and employers to understand their rights and obligations to the law. The Workplace Regulations Act (1992) This act ensures that management provide employees with a suitable working environment that is productive of work activities and is obstruction free in the workplace premises.
The legislation covers effective conditions of the workplace environment such as lighting, sanitary, equipment, workstations, room dimensions and space. Although Under the regulation, the employer also must make ‘suitable’ welfare facilities for employees including those individuals with disabilities. From an ethical perspective the waitress should’ve of been aware of common spillages and un-safe hazards from the compulsory H&S practices of staff training, but with the hazard being non visible, it is difficult to question whether the employer is liable nder this act without a technical investigation. The Management of HASAW Act (1999) Under this law it is the employer’s responsibility to impose general principles of developing a prevention policy that manages the working conditions and assessments of risks such as slip & trip to all employees. Employers must also provide employees with the relevant training to staff especially young or temporary workers because of the lack of H&S knowledge they may have, and must demonstrate to them the necessary control measures of risk controls, Was the waitress in question young? Under 16 or below the working age) or was the waitress inexperienced to general principles? This remains questionable and can be factors that were penetrated because of the employer’s role in managing their safety. The act enforces that employees have a legal duty to report accidents and hazards that may cause danger or illness and must notify the employer to make the necessary safety arrangements. Any breaches of this act by the employer could result in legal enforcement under The Health and Safety (Offences) act (2008). 1. 1Continued The Health & Safety at Work Act (1974)
This main body of the H&S legislation act ensures the waitresses welfare and safety is protected especially to those whom may be affected by their routine working activities. Under the HASAW act employees have the legal duty of not placing themselves or other individuals in any danger, and must cohere and practice policies which state maintaining a safe working environment for all workers. A cause of the accident could be due to the waitress’s lack of comprehension of safety equipment provided by the employer, which must have the relevant guides and information on how to use apparatuses from suppliers and manufacturers.
They too have also a legal duty to provide the appropriate information about the use of products that may impose technicality and self-harm without necessary instructions this is also supported under the sub legislation for – Construction Design and Management Regulations (1994) Employment Sick Pay The waitress has entitlement to sick pay because of exceeding the minimum of 4 days sick leave she had to take off work. Employment contracts vary with different employers and can determine the type of sick pay collectable from them. Two types of sick pay; (I)Contractual sick pay (SSP) (II) Statutory sick pay
The waitress will NOT be able to claim any type of sick pay if: (1) She has been working within a 3 month probation period (2) or is a new employee whom has not done any work under contract. She’ll have to provide evidence of injury /illness or medical information as its compulsory for record and audit purposes, required even if the manager witnessed the accident. Continuity of payment ‘if’ not stipulated in the contract may have an ‘implied contract’ term and therefore will need to be addressed by the employer. Variable pay schemes and assessments can be seen at the following link; (http://www. irect. gov. uk/en/MoneyTaxAndBenefits/BenefitsTaxCreditsAndOtherSupport/Illorinjured/DG_10018786) 1. 2 Procedural Issues Seriousness of the incident Firstly it is important to understand the severity of the accident, were the waitress slipped and tripped on a spillage, which in affect caused physical damage and the staff member having to take more time of work than the prior 3 weeks. A breach of not having an effective Health & Safety Management system imposed by the H&S commission which states – “The workplace requires floors to be suitable, in good condition and free from obstructions.
People must be able to move around safely – Health, Safety and Welfare Regulations (1992). It seems that the risk management at the cafe seems to be very poor and not meeting the provisions of this requirement. Assessments of potential high risks that can affect members of the public and staff in the workplace must be carried out by employers on a regular basis. It can safely be assumed that in this situation the risk was not acknowledged by any members of staff especially the cafe manager as he was a witness and therefore did not initiate an immediate response to the risk.
Therefore a failed compulsory ‘duty of care’ was not provided to the staff and public members. Every organisation should have an implemented safety management system which identifies the problem areas on site and after findings of any particular risk must be recorded for any business with more than 5 employees. In most cases such as this an accident is usual caused due to lack of management and awareness of the necessary preventions measures. The following are factors which usually occur and are what could have caused the accident •Lack of risk assessments and management control •Individuals not being educated of the HSE regulations Non-regular monitory of slip and trip hazards at the workplace •Not taking the inevitable risks seriously and using incorrect measures. Slip and Trip are responsible for an average of 2 fatalities a year, which are known to be more frequent in the manufacturing and service industries. National HSE statistics at the end of 2009 show an average slip and trip are responsible for over a third of accidents in the workplace, of which 20% of over 3 day injuries to employees and are reported major injuries. This has had an extreme affect on production costs, with an annual reported cost of ? 512m to employers and a ? 33m to NHS and public health service. 1. 3 Incident Report stages Reporting R. I. D. D. O. R After acknowledging the severity of the accident it is important to gather the right information in order to make the report for investigations purposes or even legal proceedings. The accident qualifies to be reported in – The Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) (1995). This report allows you to record the event of the incident to superior staff members such as employers whom are in control of the premises and it is within their legal duty to carry out each incident report.
For possible legal proceedings and for the manager to again make a thorough investigation under the RIDDOR Act (1995) It is important and advised to take down eye witness statements that were at the scene of the incident i. e. ; the Barista and the duty manager and the child’s parent that allegedly spilled the drink, this will improve the accuracy of the report. This will also be valid information when contacting the Incident Contact Centre (ICC) whom will make a record of the incident and review the level of risk, it which it will be passed to the relevant enforcing authority.
Stage 1; Reporting the accident As an employee at the cafe it is a requirement to make sure that you have the Employee Accident Book (which should be submitted 10 days after a reported Riddor report) for your own personal log of accidents and injuries this will be a lot easier for the ICC to understand the terms of the report, using this and an internal recording system. Due to the staff member having to take more than a consecutive 3 days off work, it is then required to fill the F2508- R. I. D. D. O. R. FORM (internal recording system) and should be reported to HSE authority.
Using these methods will ensure report accuracy so for incident occurrences within the next 3 years, the ICC can contact the enforcing authority were if necessary will be able to identify new exercises in Health & Safety regulation or prevention systems to implement in the future of the organisation (cafe). Stage 2; Contacting the HSE Authority The manager at Cafe Nero by law is responsible to report the incident to the ICC, which is done by contacting a contact centre operator via telephone or email to report the Riddor incident were they will assess the severity.
The consultant will ask a few questions about the incident, and they will take down the relevant details such as the time/date, main cause and the injuries endured. Again as mentioned before when in a case of possible court proceedings or claim disputes the accident book and the internal reporting will be used in the investigation process so it is important to record the witness statements to reduce error and for authority bodies to identify whether it is a fact a minor or major risk exposed, in retrospect of the injuries that the waitress suffered. 1. Causes of ‘Slip and Trip’ accidents Risks of the Accident model The customers child spilled an orange juice drink on the floor were the waitress ‘slipped’ and fell. Although that was the cause of the accident, there are other factors to consider that could also be potential causes, this is shown in the diagram in Appendix A (Figure 1. 1). The diagram illustrates the many factors to consider in this model when potential occurrences are going to happen. All internal factors within the model indeed mean that the control and regulations of operations in the cafe need o be exercised, such as cleaning management, wearing suitable footwear at all times and the correct flooring of the establishment. Floor material “Floors must not be slippery, so they put people’s safety at risk” – The Health, Safety and Welfare Regulations (1992) Flooring at any organization must meet the standards of the Health and Safety Executive [HSE] and the Health and Safety Laboratory [HSL] whom implements the guidelines and requirements for the authority bodies on the technical assessments and research for the slippery surfaces provisions.
HSE figures of 35,000 slip accidents are being caused at the workplace every year, due to this the floors must be kept dry and be suitable for staff to operate work activity in, without fear of slip. To ensure avoidance of hazards such as uneven surfaces or holes, the floors must be maintained in orders i. e. slip coatings being correctly applied and floor surfaces to be cleaned correctly to avoid slippage and contamination. Also displaying correct caution and warnings i. e. ; wet floor or slippery surface signs is important for public safety.
Behaviour Behavior contributes highly to the safety practices within organizations, and can implicate on the productivity towards reducing levels of hazards and efficiency towards conducting practices. Perception and Communicating risks are elements that rely on behaviour of individuals and are also components of a risk management -see Appendix B [Fig 1. 2] the model illustrates different stages involved in risk prevention and can be simulated to the accident in the cafe accident. The Management of HASAWA (1999)” states “require employers to carry out risk assessments, make arrangements to implement necessary measures, appoint competent people and arrange for appropriate information and training” this supports the fact that employees must comply with the regulations and to have a standard conduct of behaviour disciplines i. e. , public awareness of their own and general public health and safety codes of practice, education and awareness of HSE principles.
For example this could also include negligence of cleaning management and sanitations. and although it is not highly sort for activity, legally it is the responsibility of every staff member to clean and maintain the safety of their own workspaces under the HASW Act (1974) Footwear Footwear is an important provision of personal safety especially where the floor area does not always stay clean and dry. Assessments under RR780 slip resistant report show that various flooring surfaces require different footwear disciplines.
It can be recommended that the organization implements footwear requirements for staff members to ensure low slip risk. The European standards testing governed by the Health and Safety Laboratory [HSL] provides the testing for the suitable footwear in the workplace environment. As regular inspection of the flooring is not carried out by authority bodies, it could be recommended having an internal monitory system to assess the condition of the flooring, due to the constant public usage of the floor space. In addition this would cut costs and keep staff awareness Conclusion
From the report analysis of both legal and procedural issues, it explains the necessary protocols in following legislation and individual responsibility towards health and safety management at work. From an investigative view point, it seems that the employer is liable for the accident as they have demonstrated a misconduct of lack of compliance of the three health and safety laws detailed in this report, therefore putting the waitress in unconsidered dangers. Lack of moral duty and risk management are the main issues that seem to be prominent in this study, and are clearly important factors that protect individuals in any work institution.
It can be identified that Cafe Nero has a fault within their control management system, (A low-cost system implemented is questionable) and staff are clearly not aware of the safety regulations towards other individuals. I regard this as a concern seeing that the cafe is within the service industry, and as mentioned before, it is a very negligent cause of risk to have been exposed to, as sanitation is a compulsory factor in maintaining hygiene and cleanliness (especially) for the general public. In 2005 a similar incident happened at an Asda supermarket in Pembroke.
A routine inspection was being conducted on the shop floor and an employee slipped on a floor spillage and landed in the walk in freezer door on what the spillage was reported as an excessive build up of ice from a freezer. As a result the staff member endured a severe injury and Asda were summoned with a court order were they fined ? 3,500 and ? 650 for a breach of RIDDOR and ? 6000 fine to the council. This is a clear example of the seriousness of the accident and the possibility of its repercussions.
This incident can cause Cafe Nero a negative reputation and may prevent customers from wanting to visit the diner because of the uncertainty of assurance towards their own safety. It is situations such as this that has contributed to costing businesses over ? 500m at the end of 2009 due to unsighted accidents. Again this is a common hazard but is inexcusable ‘if’ the correct preventions and management are being followed. This concludes with the questions; Are the laws being followed? Or are they just being ignored?
I personally think they are being ignored and suggest that Cafe Nero make some very effective changes to prevent this situation from occurring again.