Positions and key issues

The British Safety Council is a campaigning organisation, with a clear focus on influencing the future direction of health and safety policy and law across the globe.

Our policy positions set out what we believe and capture the organisation’s view on key topical issues. These positions are developed in collaboration with members and others to ensure that they remain current, evidence-based and evolve as each issue moves forward and develops.

Some of our key positions are on the importance of managing health risks, including mental health, the important role of leadership, worker involvement and competence for good health and safety.  

Live issues

Topics and issues on which we are currently actively engaged.

Young workers

British Safety Council has a long standing strategic objective to promote and protect the health and safety of young workers. Our campaign, Speak Up, Stay Safe, is one of the key measures we have put in place to help develop a greater awareness among young people of the risks that they face at work and their role in helping identify and manage those risks.

For more information, please contact [email protected]


Research has shown that competence is comprised of both knowledge, acquired through training, and skills, developed through experience and practice. British Safety Council believes that it is important that everyone in the workplace has the opportunity to develop competence in health and safety that is relevant and proportionate to their role. Everyone has a different learning style, so there is a place for both formal structured learning and for skills based learning. The key is to ensure that the required level of competence is determined for each role and that each person has a personal development plan which sets out the most suitable route to competence for them.

For more information, please contact [email protected]

What is safety?

British Safety Council believes that no-one should be injured or made ill at work and that good health and safety management supports efficient business operation. Effective management of health and safety isn’t about stopping work or getting in the way of business objectives. It’s about conducting necessary work activities as safely and efficiently as possible.

It’s not possible to be 100% safe all the time. Getting health and safety right is about finding a balance between necessary and desirable activities and the risk of incident or injury, a point that facilitates and supports business whilst still sending everyone home safe and well.

Safety is not the number one priority in businesses. If they did health and safety and nothing else, then the business would fail. Health and safety should however be embedded in everything to support and enable business objectives. It’s not the ‘what’ but it is the ‘how’

British Safety Council is committed to supporting our members and clients as they work to embed this principle in the culture of their organisations.

For more information, please contact [email protected]


British Safety Council recognises that presenteeism (the act of attending work whilst unwell) is an increasing concern to UK businesses. We believe that establishing a positive health and wellbeing culture can significantly improve morale and productivity and we are committed to developing advice, tools and services to support our members and clients in this area.

For more information, please contact [email protected]

Improving health and safety in rapidly developing counties

Rapidly developing countries such as India are making great strides to increase their overall wealth and the opportunities they provide to improve their citizen’s lives. And just as countries are at different economic stages, so countries like India are currently modernising their approach to health, safety and the environment. This is urgently needed as tens of thousands of Indian workers still die at work each year and many more suffer life changing injuries.

The experience of the UK is that with a clear legal and regulatory framework protecting the health and safety of all workers; a properly resourced inspectorate to ensure compliance with the law; good collaboration between employers and workers, and a trained and competent workforce, will together significantly reduce injury and ill health at work. We are convinced that this approach will work in India to reduce health, safety and environmental risks and save lives.

The British Safety Council has played an important role to achieve this in the UK over many years and is now pleased to be able contribute its services – whether training, audit or advice – to all those in India who have an influence over the safety and health of India workers, and over protections to the environment.  

For more information, please contact [email protected]

Sensible health and safety; business case for good health and safety

Support sensible, proportionate and targeted health and safety management. Strong support for the need for stakeholders to actively make the case for the economic and social benefits of proportionate and effective health and safety management.

For more information, please contact [email protected]

Worker involvement

We support active involvement of the workforce which we consider essential to effective health and safety management. We do not support the need for a strengthening of current law and believe that there is a place for both the traditional trade union and the newer employee consultation approaches to cater for variation in organisational structure.

For more information, please contact [email protected]