Health and Safety in the Workplace - The Sword of Honour Award
We’ve already introduced you to the British Safety Council (BSC) which is one of the world’s leading health and safety organisations alongside IOSH and IIRSM. The organisation is a leading provider of training and services to health and safety practitioners worldwide and, here in the UK, is the only body that offers a complete suite of health and safety qualifications from Entry Level to Level 6 in the British national framework.
Each year, the BSC awards its highest accolade, the Sword of Honour, to business sites that have achieved a five star outcome after following the BSC Five Star Occupational Health and Safety Audit, a comprehensive audit to benchmark health and safety management performance against best practice. The Five Star Audit offers businesses the following benefits:
- Improved safety performance, workforce morale and wellbeing.
- A potential reduction in the rates of accidents, injuries and ill health.
- Reduced litigation costs.
- Enhanced reputation.
The Audit is suitable for organisations that need a detailed, objective evaluation of their occupational health and safety management systems and any associated arrangements. The Audit measures performance against key safety management indicators and will identify areas of positive or negative practice and serves as a structured approach for continuous improvement in the future.
The specification model for the Audit involves two vital safety management indicators which are assessed continually throughout the audit process:
- Leadership (and commitment) at every level of the organisation
- Continuous improvement
The organisation’s approach to occupational health, employee wellbeing, safety culture, allocation of resources to health and safety and planning for change are all taken into consideration during the Audit as these are considered to be important best practice factors.
Every year, business sites that have already achieved the five stars can apply for a Sword of Honour Award and, if successful, can attend the Sword and Globe of Honour Luncheon. In order to be eligible for the Award, the site must satisfy the following criteria:
- The site must NOT have suffered any fatalities
- The site must NOT have been subject to any prohibition notices
- The site must NOT have been the subject of any convictions in relation to health and safety
The Sword of Honour Award Scheme for 2015 is open to business units and sites that achieved a five star outcome in the Five Star Occupational Health and Safety Audit between 1st August, 2014 and 31st July, 2015. There is detailed information on the British Safety Council official website. Businesses that have satisfied the above criteria and want to apply for the Award can start the ball rolling by completing the application form which requires applicants to answer a structured four-part question. Applications for the 2015 Sword of Honour Award must be received by 4th September, 2015 and the results will be announced on 12th October.