Young Workers

Archive No. 8

In the news Law in action In quotes Archive»

Click here to go to the top of the page.In the news


RoSPA work placement course, Edinburgh

RoSPA will be running the IOSH Work Placement course from 17th January 2008 in Edinburgh. It is intended for all those in the Education sector, Training and Enterprise Councils, Education Business Partnerships and other organisations who arrange, monitor or administer work experience placements.

The 2-day course will help delegates to understand the roles and responsibilities of all parties involved in work experience placement, as well as understand the causation theory of work-related accidents/incidents and ill-health and the methods of prevention.

Course focus includes:

  • Managing health and safety on work placements
  • Key principles of health and safety law
  • Relevant legislation
  • Introduction to work placement health and safety assessment
  • Loss causation theory
  • Common workplace hazards and controls
  • Monitoring and review

To book call 0121 248 2233 or for courses in Scotland call 0131 449 9378 or email

Employment rights for young people

The TUC and unionlearn in the Midlands are working with Education Business Link and the Raw Nerve Theatre Company to deliver free employment rights training to Year 10 students in Birmingham Schools, from the end of November.

Through 4 interactive sessions led by Raw Nerve, each event will give a dramatic overview of rights and responsibilities, health and safety and bullying at work, and student discussions will follow each piece of theatre.

For more information - contact Pete Try unionlearn Regional Education Officer 0121 236 4454 or Angela Reid of Birmingham and Solihull Education Business Link 0121 248 8628.

NIOSH youth safety curriculum

NIOSH (the US National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) has launched 'Youth @ Work: Talking Safety', a foundation curriculum in occupational safety and health.

Talking Safety is a comprehensive curriculum consisting of six modules, student handouts, overheads, a PowerPoint slide show, video, and interactive activities. It also includes references to resources for more information. The curriculum raises awareness and equips students to become partners in workplace safety and health.

For more information on the curriculum, click here

To access the resources, click here

Driving lessons proposed for schools

A proposal to teach safer driving in schools will be included in a wide-ranging consultation document on life enhancement and preparing for work, due to be issued by the Government in the next few months.

Driving theory could become part of the curriculum and Jim Fitzpatrick, Transport Minister, has not ruled out the possibility that pupils could also gain practical experience of driving before they reach the age of 17.

Read more here

Landmark judgement for ‘too young’ employee

A 20-year-old woman has become the first person to win an age discrimination claim on the grounds that she was too young.

Megan Thomas, from Shirley Oaks Village, Surrey, worked as a membership secretary of an exclusive London club but told a tribunal she had been dismissed after managers told her she was not old enough to deal with their members.

The Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006, which came into force on 1 October 2006, make it unlawful to discriminate against workers under the age of 65 on the grounds of age. To date, the cases that have been brought under the legislation have referred to employees who have suffered discrimination for being older.

Read more about the case on the Workplace Law website

Students’ health and safety research award

Top students at The Scottish Centre for Occupational Safety and Health (SCOSH) are to be awarded a £500 cash prize.

Specialist software company, eHandS, will present the award to outstanding MSc students for research into health and safety in the workplace. The competition is open to students completing their Masters project in MSc Safety and Risk Management in Scotland in 2008.

For more information, click here

Temporary Agency Workers’ Bill dropped

Nearly half of temporary workers are aged 21-30, and a union-backed Bill aimed at giving agency workers legal equal treatment rights at work has been dropped at the end of the current parliamentary legislative session.

The Temporary Agency Workers (Prevention of Less Favourable Treatment) Bill intended to aid the more than 1 million agency staff who currently miss out on a whole range of benefits such as overtime rates, commission, sickness and maternity pay, and to end exploitation of workers by rogue employment agencies.

For more information, click here

Pete’s course work scoops award

A teacher at a Birmingham college has become the first-ever recipient of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) Health and Safety Champions Award for his work in helping develop a groundbreaking health and safety course for teenagers.

Pete Glasswell, work experience co-ordinator at Cockshut Hill Technology College, in Yardley, picked up the award for his work in helping to develop the Workplace Hazard Awareness Course (WHAC), which is expected to be delivered to over 30,000 Year 10 pupils nationwide by the end of 2007.

For further information, see the IOSH website

Injuries to youth on farms - statistics and guidelines

NIOSH has published statistics to its website regarding injuries to youths on US farm operations. The information page also features guidance on how to keep youth safe on farms, including specific advice on animal, machine and water safety.

Access the page here

Face of the union on Facebook

A new Facebook application from the TUC has been launched in November. My Union allows union members to place a badge for their union onto their Facebook profile, and to see which unions other friends belong to.

The application will also highlight official union Facebook groups, so should be helpful to unions that are seeking to network activists or promote campaigns on Facebook. Unions that currently use Facebook to engage with their members online include Unite, NUJ, Prospect and GMB.

Anyone wanting to add the application to their own Facebook profile can do so at

European risk observatory young workers report

OSH in figures : Young workers – Facts and figures is the latest publication from the European Agency for Health and Safety at Work’s European risk observatory.

The report and its related Factsheets (Facts 69 and Facts 70) aim to provide a review of the hazards young workers are exposed to at work, and their short-term and long-term consequences. It does this by analysing statistics and studies, and through selected case studies of prevention.

The report is available on the website of OSHA’s Publications Office


Click here to go to the top of the page.Law in action

The information on accidents and prosecutions featured in this section comes from a number of different sources including the Health and Safety Executive and regional and national newspapers.

Click here to go to the top of the page.Young Worker quotes

“If we can get them up to speed on the health and safety basics before they go on their work placements or get their first job, then they’ve got a much better chance of looking after themselves.”

Pete Glasswell, winner of IOSH Health and Safety Champions award


'It is well known that young workers are at a greater risk of injury than older, more experienced workers. Employers who take on young staff have a legal obligation to protect their welfare.” David Urpeth, of Irwin Mitchell solicitors


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