Directors have to take the initiative in drawing up their own practical, common-sense health and safety guidelines, the Health and Safety Commission (HSC) and employers have stressed.
A new guide has been published by the HSC and the Institute of Directors to remind directors across organisations that it is their responsibility to lead on health and safety. Directors also needed to establish policies and practices that made health and safety an integral part of their culture and values, they said.
The guidance has been backed by the government. Health and safety minister Lord McKenzie of Luton said: "The health and safety of employees is a moral and ethical obligation for each and every employer, and this must be driven home from board level.
"Only this way will we ensure that health and safety is taken seriously. This guidance clearly sets out the agenda for effective leadership of health and safety," he added.