HSE introduces course in bid to cut workplace accidents among school-leavers

A Health and Safety Executive (HSE) initiative to reduce the number of workplace accidents involving young people has been previewed by teachers and employers before being made available to schools across the UK.

The Wise up to Work initiative aims to teach young people about the hazards they might face when they enter the workplace. And a course has been developed by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), which forms part of a three-way initiative which includes a new qualification offered by British Safety Council Awards.

The course and qualification aims to provide Year 10 students with a basic understanding of health and safety in the workplace, so that they understand hazards, and what to expect of their employer.

Neil Budworth, IOSH president, said: “In the last 10 years, 66 under 19-year-olds were killed and more than 14,500 were badly injured at work. Many of these accidents happened in the first few weeks on the job, which suggests that not only are inductions inadequate, but that young people may not be prepared for work in the first place.”

Jonathan Rees, the HSE’s deputy chief executive (policy), said: “This new qualification is the perfect example of how government and industry can work together to ensure that tomorrow’s workforce has a sound basis for understanding the hazards that confront us every day at work.”

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