Health and safety regulations also extend to your employer being responsible for implementing measures and procedures to ensure your own personal security. Personal safety breaches such as intruders committing a violent act upon staff are, fortunately, very rare indeed and, due to the nature of business in general, companies have to tread a fine line between ensuring that they are open and accessible to visitors, particularly if those ‘visitors’ are customers and marrying that against their need to make sure that their staff can work in a safe, secure and unthreatening environment.
Then, there are also issues which could cause the staff to feel concerned about the actions taken by employers. For example, if an employer was to take personal security to the limit, staff may not take too kindly by being watched constantly from all angles and at all times by CCTV cameras or being followed around by security guards wherever they go as they could claim that this was an invasion of personal privacy.
Therefore, although the safety and security of staff must adhere to the laws laid out in relation to health and safety by the Government, it’s important to get the balance right.
Businesses come in all shapes and sizes and whilst a threat to your staff’s personal security can occur in premises large and small, the extent to which you’ll need to put security arrangements and procedures in place will vary between companies. However, each company, big or small, should carry out its own Risk Assessment to determine what they feel they need to do whilst ensuring that they are still compliant with the law. This may include things like looking at potentially vulnerable locations within the building(s) or premises, formulating contingency plans in the event of an emergency situation and identifying any security measures which need installing and having some way of monitoring these to gauge their effectiveness.
Training and awareness should also be implemented so that workers are fully aware of their responsibilities should their security be threatened as well as the resources they have at their disposal. This is important in areas such as customer service where all manner of security aids might be implemented which might include alert buzzers, toughened glass screen partitions etc.
Procedures should be put in place and all staff aware of them in relation to the control of access to the premises by visitors and where visitors can and cannot go. In some larger business premises, this may entail employing the services of security personnel and maybe installing CCTV cameras, alarms and light systems and having locked access doors for certain staff members to access only and having regular security checks carried out.
Night Shift and Lone Workers
Night shift and lone workers are especially vulnerable and you may need to put extra security provisions in place for them such as equipping workers with a remote control device that can activate an audible alarm if they are at risk or keeping certain doors and entrances locked that wouldn’t ordinarily be locked at other times.
Parking facilities for staff should be well lit and the route to walk to the car park should also be illuminated and provide good visibility so things like bushes and trees which could provide a useful hiding place for a would be intruder or a person intent on committing a crime should be removed. If you do employ security personnel, you may also wish to consider having one of them escort lone workers to their cars or make some other provisions to get them to and from work more safely if need be.
The list of measures you might choose to take is endless and technology in the field of personal security continues to advance at such a pace that you could be really tempted to go to extremes that would probably not be worth the money you’d spend out on it nor relevant to your business premises. Furthermore, an oversensitive nature to the whole issue of your staff’s personal security could imbue a sense of unnecessary fear and even resentment if they think their personal privacy is being compromised so your company’s security measures should be thought through carefully, whilst being compliant with the law.
Last Updated on 4 August 2021