HSC chair calls for more NVQs
"BILL Callaghan, chairman of the Health and Safety Commission, visited Hanson’s Builth Wells Quarry in South Wales last October to launch five days of lectures and demonstrations linked to the European week for safety and health. The initiative was the idea of Hanson safety representative Colin Evans, a plant operator at Vaynor Quarry, near Merthyr Tydfil, who devised and planned the entire programme."
"‘I commend Colin’s efforts in pulling all this together, and thank Hanson for allowing him to do so,’ said Mr Callaghan. ‘It is the aim of the HSC to have a workforce which is skilled, competent and involved in the health and safety of their workplace. What Colin has organized shows what can be done by every health and safety representative with a commitment to health and safety.’"
"Describing worker participation as a key factor in creating a safe workplace, Mr Callaghan said safety reps have a vital role to play, yet over 60% of workplaces in Britain still have no form of safety representation. ‘Competent safety reps who have attended the relevant training courses will help to create an industry that is an example to others,’ he said."
"He added that the HSC’s Hard Target initiative, which seeks a 10% year-on-year reduction in accidents in the quarrying industry, had been a great success to date, and that the companies who had achieved the best results were those who were fully committed to involving their workforce and to measuring their workforce’s competence."
Mr Callaghan said the introduction of this industry-wide commitment would lead to over 50% of the workforce being certified as competent and assured at Level 2 NVQ by 2004.
"‘These NVQs have been developed by the industry, for the industry and measure against national standards,’ he said."
"‘Industry has given me a commitment that these NVQ’s will be used, and I expect the entire workforce –– including managers –– to gain a relevant competence-assured qualification.’"