Moral Arguments for Health and Safety

I’ve noticed that learners often struggle to come up with moral arguments for health and safety, so here are a few ideas to get you thinking…

  1. Employers owe a duty of care to those who could be affected by their business, including employees, contractors, visitors etc.
  2. Prevention of injuries, illnesses (inc. mental illness) caused by work
  3. Prevention of pain and suffering to others who could be affected, such as fellow employees, family and friends
  4. We should strive not to be one of the businesses contributing to the accident and ill health statistics (ref. HSE)
  5. The morale of the entire workforce can be negatively impacted by poor health and safety
  6. Our people come to work to provide for their family, not to be harmed by the work that they do
  7. Our people have shown loyalty to us through their hard work and deserve to have that loyalty returned by their employer looking after them
  8. Some of the hazards are so high risk as to potentially cause death, so a family will lose a father, husband, child etc.
  9. How would they (the management) feel if it was their loved ones who were being put at risk
  10. An accident at work could end someone’s career
  11. Could cause people to turn to drugs or alcohol as a result of absence from work
  12. We should be striving to contribute to a better society/community. H&S is a key part of that.
  13. We say that “H&S is our no. 1 priority” and that “our people are our greatest asset”, now let’s live by those promises
  14. Some of our activities affect members of the public, including children, who could be harmed through no fault of their own
  15. They (management) are in trusted positions of power and authority and should strive to live up to the expectations placed on them and lead by example
  16. Some of our people are going through difficult times, we should be trying to support them, not make their situation worse by risking an accident at work
  17. Better H&S = better business = better job security = happier employees = better communities
  18. While not intending to hurt people, we can be judged for what we DON’T do as well as what we do. Failure to act responsibly can and does hurt people.
  19. Prevention of harm is the right thing to do.