Changing PPE Regulations: What Employers Need to Know
Beginning 6th April 2022, all employers across Great Britain will be required to adhere to new regulations pertaining to the use of personal protective equipment (PPE). It’s imperative for employers to understand what changes may be necessary to keep workers safe and avoid non-compliance.
The Personal Protective Equipment at Work Regulations 1992 requires all employers to provide suitable PPE to employees who may be exposed to health and safety risks at work. The upcoming amendment calls for these previously existing duties and responsibilities to extend to employees classified as limb (b) workers.
The UK’s Employment Rights Act 1996 defines employees as being one of two limbs:
- Limb (a) refers to workers who have an employment contract.
- Limb (b) describes workers who have a less formal employment agreement and contract.
In general, workers classified as limb (b) may:
- Carry out casual or irregular work for one or more organisations
- Receive holiday pay but not other employment benefits, such as the minimum period of statutory notice
- Carry out work only they choose to
- Have a contract or other arrangement to perform work or services personally for a reward while having limited rights to send another party to complete tasks
If a risk assessment finds that limb (b) workers will need PPE to carry out their responsibilities, employers will be required to provide the equipment free of charge. In addition, employers will be held responsible for the compatibility, maintenance, storage and replacement of PPE.
It’s vital for organisations to understand that all employment agreements must be considered and defined on a case-by-case basis. The precise employment status of any individual worker can only be determined by a court or tribunal.
At Digney Grant we have years of experience in all forms of business insurance and can provide expert guidance and risk management solutions to help you get ready for the incoming changes. Contact us today.