Business ignores warnings on RSI

Employers are too often complacent about risks of RSI, especially to the

More than three-quarters of young workers in the UK are at risk of getting
repetitive strain injury because of the nature of their work, the TUC has

British businesses are too often complacent about the risks of RSI, or
simply ignore the warning signs, the union’s body added.

Statistics from the Health and Safety Executive showed about 65 per cent of
all UK workers had jobs involving the repetition of the same sequence of
movements many times, with the figure rising to 78 per cent for younger workers
aged 16-to-24, said the TUC.

For those having to perform tasks quickly, the figures were 60 per cent for
all workers and 71 per cent for younger employees.

More than half of the UK’s four million younger workers were forced to work
in awkward or tiring positions, compared with 45 per cent of the total

About 36 per cent of younger workers had to use "appreciable
force" at work, compared with 28 per cent as a whole, and 43 per cent were
unable to choose the order in which they carried out their tasks, compared with
33 per cent in the general working population, said the TUC.

TUC general secretary John Monks warned employers were too often choosing to
ignorethe warning signs by failing to assess the RSI risks in their companies.

Often they were bringing in large numbers of casual workers, who were often
young and too scared to complain about bad conditions, he argued.

The TUC has now written to the chief executives of the main PC retailers in
the UK, asking if they would be willing to issue a joint leaflet on display
screen safety, which would be made available to all people buying computers.

Mr Monks said: "Computers will be at the heart of all jobs in the
future. But if we continue to ignore the RSI risks faced by our young
workforce, we are effectively writing off a whole generation.

In a separate development, the HSE has published guidance for people who
employ under-18s, explaining their duty of protection as well as offering
specific guidance on risks.

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