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Campaign focuses on workplace safety

The Health & Safety Executive and Milton Keynes Council unveiled the Healthy Workplace MK campaign at a meeting of the Midsummer Breakfast Club.

Healthy Workplace MK is a new service providing free health and safety advice to anyone with a small to medium sized business with five to 250 staff. Their remit covers issues ranging from managing sickness absences to helping employers to ensure their business is a safe working environment.

In 2006-07, work-related ill health and injuries cost UK businesses 36 million lost days and billions of pounds. In small firms, incidents and ill health to key employees can reduce profitability and even threaten the business, not to mention the risk of claims for damages or prosecution, Midsummer Breakfast Club delegates were told.

Milton Keynes council chief environmental health officer Philip Winsor said: “Milton Keynes was chosen from the south east area as its main employment areas are within the discrete area of the new town boundary. “All sectors of employment are represented here and it has a high percentage of small businesses that are growing in a dynamic and expanding area.

“The environmental health team frequently work with HSE colleagues on targeted initiatives and inspections. However, this particular project differs in that employers will be give advice and guidance on safety matters in their workplace with their confidentiality respected.

“It is hoped that this proactive approach will get employers to seek assistance rather than putting off dealing with matters until an investigating inspector arrives at the company reception desk.”

Pictured: (from left) Adviser Brendan Healy, project leaders Jane Don and Chris Taylor, HSC commissioner Sandy Blair and Philip Winsor.”

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