Social distancing warning to employers from the HSE

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The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has warned employers it will hand out enforcement notices to those who do not comply with the two-metre social distancing rule in workplaces that remain open during the coronavirus outbreak.

The regulator said it is “constantly reviewing” the situation and will consider taking action against those who flout the rules.

In a statement, the regulator said: “In these extraordinary times, the HSE is constantly reviewing the fast-moving situation with our partners across government to support the national effort to tackle Covid-19.

“While social distancing is fundamentally a public health measure introduced to reduce the spread of infection, we recognise the concerns raised on social distancing within the workplace and are in contact with trade unions.”

The HSE statement continued: “Where the HSE identifies employers who are not taking action to comply with the relevant guidance to control public health risks, for example employers not taking appropriate action to socially distance or ensure workers in the shielded category can follow the NHS advice to self-isolate for the period specified, we will consider taking a range of actions to improve control of workplace risks.

“These actions include the provision of specific advice to employers through to issuing enforcement notices to help secure improvements with the PHE guidance.”

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With more than 25 years' experience in business-to-business publishing, Simon is editor of LBM titles Pest and OvertheCounter. Big fan of Manchester United.