Auditing is a key component to ensuring your Health & Safety program is being evaluated and measurements are being tracked.
BP&SC uses two types of auditing tools, with the first being a Safety Climate Survey, which is used as a "snapshot" of your Safety Culture. The second tool is referred to as an Evaluation of Your Health & Safety System and is useful to analyze in more detail the strengths and gaps that are present. In addition, verification is done through workplace inspections and discussion with employees.
Evidence of a Health and Safety Program in Place
There are a number of principles which are essential to a Due Diligence defence and I continually make reference to the analogy the "nothing happens until, something happens".
Listed below are key requirements that will satisfy the legal test, which will vary from case to case depending on circumstances, should the event that "something happens" does occur.
1. WORKPLACE AUDITS - " You cannot manage what you cannot measure"
Employers must understand the nature of the potential risks and hazards in the workplace. Measuring and evaluating program performance is a vital function of managing control.
2. SAFETY POLICY & THE IMPLEMENTATION PROGRAM
Once the workplace hazards have been identified, the company must have a Safety Policy, but more importantly, a program to implement the policy.
3. CRITICAL TASK PROCEDURES and POLICIES
The program must have procedures and practices in place, which are specifically designed to prevent the occurrence of a LOSS.
4. TRAINING & DOCUMENTATION
The employer, through its managers and supervisors, must ensure that employees understand and follow the policies, procedures and practices. Training must be current to set standards and documentation of training is essential.
5. REINFORCEMENT of HEALTH & SAFETY
Safety policies, procedures and practices must be consistently "positively reinforced" and a frequency standard should be established.