Companies failing to inform staff of VDU risks

The
TUC says the widespread use of computers is increasing workplace risks.

Speaking
at the Parliamentary launch of a week of action by The Guide Dogs for the Blind
Association to draw attention to the effects of visual display units (VDUs) on
people’s eyesight, TUC General Secretary John Monks said: "Personal computers
and other visual display units are revolutionising not just the work we all do,
but the risks we run.

"Those
risks bring with them responsibilities. The main responsibility lies with
employers who must assess the risks and then inform and train their workers. In
particular they should be informing them about their rights to regular breaks
and regular eye tests. Unfortunately, Guide Dogs have found out that far too
few employers – less than two-thirds – tell their workers about their right to
a free eye test.

"Workers
need to know what their ‘eye’ rights are, and employers need to make sure that
VDUs are a business benefit, not an eye-straining eyesore."

Guide
Dogs Chief Executive Geraldine Peacock said: "The research we commissioned
has shown ignorance of eye care in the workplace. We hope to encourage everyone
to make regular visits to the optician, which can be vital in detecting early
signs of more serious eye conditions."

www.tuc.org.uk

By Quentin Reade

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