03 Oct 2016 04 May 2017
Be able to implement health, safety and security practices in the salon
1/ What is a risk assessment?
A risk assessment is the process whereby the employer identifies hazards in the workplace and analyses their potential risk in an effort to determine or control the hazard. The employer must inspect the layout of the salon and the work activities undertaken by the staff in order to evaluate the potential risk of harm, accidents, or illness.
Risk assessments in the workplace are governed primarily by a tripartite of laws. They are:
Given these laws, employers are responsible for the protection and safeguard the welfare of the staff working at the salon and members of the public that visit the salon. It is also the employerâ€™s responsibility to notify the staff and visiting public of potential health and safety risks.
A risk assessment identifies a potential hazard, identifies who might be harmed and how, determines the protection in place, evaluates the likelihood and severity of its outcome (typically on a scale of 1-5), and stipulates the risk rating (typically on a scale of 1-25).
In the salon, for example, one potential risk is the damage and harm that could arise to both the clients and members of staff while operating Laser and IPL Equipment. By conducting a risk assessment before anyone operates the equipment, the risk can be reduced, even if it cannot be completely eliminated. Normally the owner or a member of management, or even an outside company, would do a round of the premises and conduct the risk assessment before any staff or clients are allowed to engage with the workplace.
A risk assessment, simply put, is a set of preemptive and calculated measures with the goal or reducing or elimating risks and hazards in the workplace.
One may determine whether a hazard poses a serious risk by looking at past experience with the hazard, industry codes of best practice, information from respected organisations, testing results, information about products involved, and legislated requirements.
The risks are rated after factoring in the amount of staff and clients exposed to the risk, the severity of the risk, frequency of exposure to the risk, and the probability of the risk. Methods of hazard control include elimination, substitution, protective equipment, and imposed controls.
All hazards in the workplace should be consistently monitored and reviewed and controls should be implemented based on the findings.
2/ What are the reasons for a risk assessment?
The primary reason for a risk assessment is to remove hazards, or reduce their risk, from the workplace by adding precautions in order to create a healthier and safer environment for staff, customers, and visitors.
Risk assessments are an essential facet of a good health and safety management plan in the workplace. Risk assessments help in the following areas:
In a legal sense, the risk assessment is important because accidents at work can be considered criminal negligence on the part of the employer as of the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974. Criminal proceedings can be brought against the employer if someone is injured in their workplace. Further to this, the onus of proof is on the employer if an accident is to occur on their premises. An accident in and of itself will be considered proof of negligence in court and it is up to the employer to provide refuting evidence. Given these legal considerations, the employer must draw up a risk assessment and make employees aware of it. The risk assessment is important because it can remove hazards and risks before they affect someone, resulting in lengthy legal proceedings for the employer.
It will help the salon manager to look at existing practices undertaken and to identify shortfalls and present potential hazards.
In relation to IPL and Laser Class 4 and Class 3b, lasers can cause damage, perhaps even permanent damage, to the eyes of both the client and member of staff. This damage can be caused by looking directly at the beam or the reflection of the beam through bounce back.
Laser beams can cause any of the damage listed below:
Indirect hazards could include forms of radiation, gas leakage, and electric shock.
There are many other associated hazards of the laser (including smoke/vapor, chemical, mechanical, and electrical), which would require a risk assessment.
By carrying out a risk assessment, and evaluating the potential hazards attached to this type of equipment, it will help the owner or manager to put safety measures and controls into the salon workplace.
3/How effective is a risk assessment
In order to analyze how effective a risk assessment has been you would need to measure the outcomes. The risk assessment, in theory, needs to be put into practice for it to be effective.
Staff must be aware of any changes immediately.
Once the risk assessment has been implemented, the new practices require measuring in order to be managed and the efficacy to be observed. The risk assessment can serve as a set of goals and practices to put in place. Once they are put in place, the employer should outline a set of Key Performance Indicators, which will inform one of whether the measures and controls in place have been met. A simple method of measurement would be that the number of incidents recorded in the accident record book declines.
The risk assessment is most effective when every person involved in the workplace is made aware of the hazards, risks, and risk assessment. Employers, employees, and clients must all be aware of their roles in protecting their own and otherâ€™s health and safety.
An effective risk assessment communicates the needs required of each individual in a clear and easy to understand manner.
The effectiveness of the risk assessment can be improved with increased commitment from all people in the workforce, particularly those in senior management. Employers should have good social and communication skills and foster a sense of teamwork in the workplace.
The following are some questions that could arise from a well thought out plan:
1. Are there any hazards that have not yet been recognised in the workplace?
2. Is it possible to get rid of hazards totally from the work place?
3. Can the damage be reduced having identified the hazards?
4. In order to protect the staff are the existing health and safety precautions adequate?
5. Without increasing costs can the standard of protection required be achieved?
6. Have alternative cost effective ways of achieving the same standard of protection been exhausted?
7. Have individual members of staff been approached in respect of their thoughts on the risk they face and do they understand why the preventive measures have been put in place?
8. Is the risk assessment process being followed in the salon and are the duties of staff to report these?
4/ Why is it important to have health, safety and security practises in place?
It is important to have these practices in place because the law requires the salon to be a safe environment for staff, clients, and visitors. If one fails to comply, one could face prosecution by an individual or company. It is important to have health and safety and security in order to protect the physical, mental, and social well being of all concerned.
In short, no workers should have to work in an environment where their health, safety, or welfare is at risk. A salon that has these practices in place will be more resistant to adverse legal action and will be viewed favourably by the public.
If the salon looks after its employees, they are more likely to look after the salon in return. Employers who feel valued and cared for will benefit their company in the following ways:
The following are the disadvantages for not having Health and Safety and security practices in place:
In summation, it makes good business sense to look after the health and safety and security procedures in the salon.
5/ What types of health and safety and security practices would be used in a salon?
There are many laws that govern the different types of health and safety and security practises used in a salon and the below list could fall under any of them:
The following are the counter measures to be put into place
The following risk assessments are to be carried out:
6/ Justify the proposals and recommendations for health, safety, and security practices. E.g. Data protection act
All the laws are in place in order to protect the employer and employee of the salon as well as its customers.
For example, under the Data Protection Act of 1998, employees must collect adequate information, including any medical condition, employment history, convictions, and credit history, from the first visit. This information needs to be kept up to date and no longer than necessary. It must be kept safe and secure and confidential.
The main justification for implementation of the Data Protection Act of 1998 is that it will minimize the risk of hazards in the workplace. Background information is important for removing risk preemptively.
Further to this, it is important to have non-discrimination procedures in place. This will ensure that all employees and clients are treated the same, regardless of their gender, race, age, relationship status, or any other factor that does not need to be taken into account in relation to the position. One such non-discrimination policy that must be adhered to is the Equal Opportunity Act of 2010.
Given the salonâ€™s presence in the public care sector, it is important to follow The Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations of 1998. This is important because following this regulation will determine whether an individual is correct for the job and dictates that employees must be correctly trained and the equipment is maintained.
The salon must also be in accordance with the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations of 1998. This accordance will determine that individuals lift and handle equipment correctly and safely and are supplied with the knowledge to do so.
7/Why is it important to follow and comply with the legislation and regulations relating to health, safety, and security practices?
It is important to comply with legislation and regulations relating to health, safety, and security practices, for the following reasons:
8/ How would you manage improvements to increase compliance with health, safety and security practices?
The following improvements would increase compliance:
9/ Why is it important to be regularly evaluating health, safety and security practices in the salon?
It is important to evaluate health and safety and security practices in the salon because it is a legal requirement and an insurance requirement. For example, under the Data Protection Act of 1998, it is important to ensure customer data is kept up to date and for longer than necessary by regularly reviewing that you are complying with this law.
Annual testing of electrical equipment ensures the safety of the equipment and in order to comply with the Electricity at Work Regulations of 1989.
Regular risk assessment provides a hazard free and safe environment. Disposing of waste correctly ensures that the Environmental Protection Act is being followed. Regular staff and client feedback allows the salon owner to make the recommended changes. Training records are kept up to date. It is important so that records can be maintained for comparisons. Methods of evaluation could be regular risk assessments including laser equipment, staff appraisals, and audit checks (with LPA to do a yearly audit).
If one does not regularly review and monitor the health, safety, and security practices in the salon, one will not know whether or not the risk assessment is complete and accurate. New risks and hazards continuously present themselves. Risks that may have begun as a low priority and low likelihood may jump up the ranks and suddenly become one of high likelihood and severity.
Regular evaluation does not need to be limited only to a set date (e.g. monthly or yearly) but rather can be prompted by the occurrence of certain events. These can include:
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