THE OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH & SAFETY


MANAGEMENT


SYSTEM OF THE UNIVERSITY


The University appreciates that the only way to provide a “safe” workplace is to ensure that the whole of the management system of the University ensures that new risks are minimized and existing hazards better controlled by every level of management.

 

The safety management system employed by the University aims to comply with guidance issued by the Government, national and international authorities. These guidelines are, and future editions will be, fully adopted by the University.  The Plan-Do-Check-Act Model of an OHS Management System is shown in Fig. 1(adapted from ILO).

 

Figure 1

Fig. 1. Model of an occupational health and safety management system. (by ILO)


I.              OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH & SAFETY POLICY OF THE UNIVERSITY (brief)

 

The safety of all members of the University Community and visitors to the campus is a major concern. The University intends to follow best practice wherever possible, which involves more than the simple compliance with legal minimum standards.

 

The The University also aims for the involvement of all staff in the improvement of health and safety at the University through Safety Committees, assisting with the development of best practice undertaking Safety Training or local safety roles within the University Units.

 

The policy of the university is to:

  • Protect the safety of all faculty, staff, students and visitors against unsafe conditions and occupational hazards;  
  • Formulate and carry out continuing effective safety programs appropriate to university operations, including instructional activities in off-campus settings;
  • Give priority to a safe work environment in the planning, direction and implementation of university activities;
  • Comply with all relevant statutes, regulations and standards of regulatory authorities representing occupational health and safety;
  • Encouraging all staff, students and visitors to develop and support a positive safety culture;
  • Involving staff and students in health and safety at all levels;
  • Securing suitable health and safety competence in staff and students;
  • Provide suitable health and safety training, where necessary (including off site);
  • Include health and safety in the training of our students so that they will continue to value safe practices in their ongoing careers;
  • Allocating adequate resources for health and safety issues at all levels in the University, and securing competent specialist advice via the University Occupational Health & Safety Office (USO);
  • Planning for health and safety provision at all levels of the University, in particular using an annual reporting and objective setting approach.
  • Planning for a culture of continuous improvement in health and safety.
  • All staff should be aware that they also have statutory duties under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act. In particular they:
    • must take reasonable care for their own and others health and safety;
    • must co-operate to enable the University to discharge its safety duties.
  • All staff should be aware that failure to comply with these requirements may lead both to disciplinary action by the University and potential legal action by the enforcement authorities.

Link: OHS Policy (full)

 

II.            THE STRUCTURE OF THE UNIVERSITY OHS MANAGEMENT

 

The hierarchy of the University OHS management is shown in Fig. 2 and responsibilities in each level are provided in the succeeding sections.

 

Figure 2. The hierarchy of the University OHS Management

 

II-A LEADERSHIP, ACCOUNTABILITY AND RESPONSIBILITIES

 

1.    EXECUTIVE BOARD (EB)

 

EB is the supreme Governing Body of the University. It has ultimate responsibility for overseeing health and safety matters at the University and for ensuring that good governance is practiced. It approves the safety strategy.

EB will monitor the delivery of the strategy and provide leadership and direction for health and safety strategic issues, in particular championing health and safety issues and ensuring these matters are effectively integrated into the management of the University.

 

Executive Board’s key tasks are to:

·         Set the Strategy (following guidance from the University Safety Committee, USC).

·         Ensure that health and safety matters are fully integrated into the University management systems.

·         Approve major health and safety policy statements on behalf of the president.

·         Ensure suitable and sufficient resources are allocated at a university level to provide health and safety services.

·         Publicly report on progress to the president on a regular basis.

 

To undertake these roles the EB member responsible for OHS will take the lead in developing reports and monitoring progress. The EB member for OHS will therefore also represent Executive Board on the University OHS Safety Committee.

   

    The Executive Board Member responsible for Safety (EBM(S)):

 

The EBM(S) is specifically identified as being one of the lead “directors” together with the GS.

 

The EBM(HS) is given the following key roles:

 

·         To champion safety issues at the Executive level in the University (together with the general secretary).

·         To hold the final authority for the enforcement of safety issues where there is a need, especially in infrastructure-related areas.

·         To communicate with the Executive Board and external bodies where safety issues are concerned.

·         To hold an ex-officio seat on the University USC and ensure that committee concerns are acted upon.

·         To advise on policy and strategic safety issues as necessary.

 

 

2.    GENERAL SECRETARY (GS)

 

The GS is specifically identified as being one of the lead “directors” together with EB member for OHS at the executive level. Basic responsibility of the GS for OHS is in the area of day to day operational activities and similar areas that his/her office is responsible.

The GS is given the following key roles:

  • To champion safety issues at the executive level in the University (together with the EBM(S)).
  • To hold the final authority for the enforcement of safety issues where there is a need in daily operational areas.
  • To communicate with the Executive Board and external bodies where safety issues are concerned.
  • To hold an ex-officio seat on the University Safety Committee (USC) and ensure that committee concerns are acted upon.
  • To advise on policy and strategic safety issues as necessary.
 

3.    THE UNIVERSITY OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH & SAFETY COMMITTEE (OHSC)

 

The University OHSC will oversee and manage the co-ordination of safety policy and will manage and monitor the implementation of the University Safety Strategy, to ensure the mission and strategy is delivered. The USC shall advise the Executive Board on matters concerning safety, including radiation, biological materials, chemicals and physical issues.

 

USC’s key tasks are to:

 

·         Develop and maintain the health and safety strategy on behalf of the University Executive Board

·         Develop and monitor the action plan for strategic health and safety matters

·         Report to Executive Board on progress in achieving the health and safety strategy and action plan

·         Set, monitor and review University health and safety policy

·         Monitor how routine health and safety work is undertaken including relevant reports to enforcing authorities

·         Provide a consultation forum for management, staff and unions on health and safety

·         Monitor the provision of health and safety support services at the University via the University Occupational Health and Safety Office, the Occupational Health Service and Faculty/Institute/Center level provisions

 

To undertake these roles the Committee will include the GS and RA(HS). The HSC is supported on a day-to-day basis by the University Health and Safety Office (HSO).

 

 

4.    H&S RESPONSIBILITIES OF FACULTIES/INSTITUTES/CENTERS/SERVICES

(To be established)

 

Each Faculty/Institute/Center/Service must form a health and safety committee to oversee the health and safety issues in its premise. They must get the consultation of the University Safety Committee (USC) and work in coordination with it.

 

Faculties/Institutes/Centers/Services must ensure that their activities are undertaken safely and with due regard to health for all staff, students and visitors in areas under their control. The key tasks of Faculties/Institutes/Centers/Services are to:  

 

·         Ensure health and safety policy and practice is suitable and sufficient in the areas under their control

·         Ensure that health and safety is fully integrated into their management plans

·         Ensure suitable and sufficient resources are allocated to health and safety issues

·         Communicate and co-operate with the faculty members & staff, USO, other units of the university in related matters

·         Enable staff and students in their premises to effectively communicate on health and safety issues

·         Annually report to the faculty members and USC summarizing the health and safety activities undertaken and plans for the forthcoming year

·         Monitor and report compliance, incidents and defects (as necessary) on any health and safety or related matters (including building maintenance issues) relating to areas in their control or shared space under their control

 

Faculties/Institutes/Centers/Services are required to have their own Safety Policies, which will provide specific details beyond the University safety policy. These Unit policies shall be reviewed at least every two years and copies of any amended policies shall be submitted to the USO and the relevant Unit Head. The USO provides guidance on the best practice with respect to the contents and coverage of Unit Safety Policies.

 

The Head of each Faculty/Institute/Center holds personal responsibility for ensuring that the Faculty/Institute/Center is run in a safe manner and is supported by the Faculty/Institute/Center Safety Officers and other trained persons as necessary to advise, monitor and plan for safe activities without undue risks to health. Where more than one Faculty/Institute/Center occupies a building they are required to co-operate with each other for those aspects that require a building overview (such as fire evacuation).

5.    THE UNIVERSITY SAFETY OFFICE (USO) (To be established)

(To be established)

 

The University occupational health and safety office (USO) will provide central services to support Faculties/Institutes/Centers/Services, and provide a central safety management resource to engender development of the University’s health and safety systems and culture. The safety service is provided to the whole of the University.

 

The USO key tasks are to:

 

·         Promote a strong ‘safety culture’ including full integration of health and safety into management plans

·         Further develop the university systems and procedures to incorporate best health and safety practice

·         Provide suitable and sufficient specialist services to support the Faculties/Institutes/Centers/Services in the execution of their duties

·         Provide expertise to faculties (for example through training and consultancy services)

·         Monitor and audit health and safety compliance and practice across the university

·         Act as a center for reporting and communicating on health and safety across the University

 

 

The role of Head of OHS

 

The Head of USO leads the USO and co-ordinates the development of policy and guidance etc. at a University level in such a way as to engender the appropriate behaviors and attitudes that make health and safety an integral part of all aspects of the life of the University.

 

In brief the role is principally as follows:

 

·         To be responsible for providing and developing a high quality and cost effective service for the University on occupational health and safety matters.

·         To develop, maintain, monitor and review the implementation of a University health and safety policy designed to provide effective and efficient controls and progressive improvements.

·         To provide a point of contact with enforcing authorities and other expert practitioners.

·         To promote awareness of and responsibility for safety among the responsible individuals.

 

Staff

 

·         Staff shall undertake to fulfil their roles with respect to health and safety and ensure that all necessary actions for health and safety management of the University are undertaken in so far as their authority pertains.

·         All managers in the University system have additional responsibility for their staff (and students) and for others that may be affected by the actions of their staff and students. This particularly applies to Principal Investigators and Laboratory managers.

Union Safety Representatives

 

·         Union Safety Representative posts are held in accordance with legislation, and entitle the nominated post holders to the full authorities defined in the legislation. The Union Safety Representatives are independent of the University Management and the University Safety Office; and are specifically appointed by the Unions to represent their members´ interests on Safety Matters. Some of the representatives are also members of the University Safety Committee (USC). Representatives are consulted on major documents drafted by the USO.

·         In addition to the Staff Safety Representatives, the Union Society is also requested to nominate Student Safety Representatives that are included on consultations and are automatically members of the University Safety Committee (USC).

6.    STAFF & STUDENT RESPONSIBILITIES

 

·         Obey the law

·         Take care of your own health and safety and that of others who may be affected by your actions at work.

·         Co-operate with your employer and co-workers to help everyone meet their legal requirements. Follow the health and safety rules of the University.

·         Follow the training you have received when using any work items your employer has given you.

·         Use machines and equipment safely.

·         Wear required personal protective equipment (PPE).

·         Report hazards to your employer, supervisor, or health and safety representative.

·         Work safely and don’t fool around.

·         If you have specific queries or concerns relating to health and safety in your workplace, talk to your employer, manager/supervisor or a health and safety representative.

·         Participate health and safety efforts of the University by reporting the hazards and generating solutions.

 

As an employee or student, the law also gives you three important rights:

 

·         The Right to Know (about dangers in your workplace and what to do about them)

·         The Right to Participate (in keeping your workplace healthy and safe).

·         The Right to Refuse (you should say no if you think someone will get hurt).


 


Prepared by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Mahmut Ekşioğlu / April 2015


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