This article will look at health and safety in annual reports to top management.
Although monitoring and reviewing health and safety performance is legally required, there is no legal obligation to publish this information in annual reports. However, guidelines exist to advise on how to address health and safety concerns in published annual reports on business activities and performance.
What to include in the report
To ensure compliance with these guidelines, annual reports must include vital information, such as the broad context of the health and safety policy, significant risks faced by employees and others, and the strategies and systems in place to control them. Additionally, the report should cover health and safety goals as per the safety policy and report on progress towards achieving these goals in the reporting period.
Other essential elements to be included are arrangements for consulting employees and involving safety representatives. Furthermore, the report should present data on health and safety performance for the reporting period, including the number of RIDDOR reportable injuries, illnesses and dangerous occurrences (presented as the rate of injuries per 100,000 employees), brief details of the circumstances of any fatalities, and the actions taken to prevent a recurrence.
Moreover, the report must indicate the number of cases of illness, disability or health problems caused or worsened by work, the total number of employee days lost due to all causes of occupational injury and illness, the number of enforcement notices served on the company with details of the requirements, and the number of convictions for health and safety offences with information on their outcome, penalty and costs, and what has been done to prevent a recurrence.
Companies are strongly encouraged to exceed these minimum standards and include additional information such as the outcome of health and safety audits and the extent and effectiveness of health and safety training provided to staff.