The driving purpose behind joint health and safety committees is to bring together workers and the employer to work together to create a safe environment and to solve safety issues within the workplace. When constructed correctly, health and safety committees can have a positive impact on the overall workplace environment. For your workplace's safety committee to have a positive impact, you need to
Start Out with a Diverse Committee
You don't want your safety committee made from employees all with the same background or training. You want to have a committee that is made up of workers from numerous different positions and backgrounds.
Your committee should include employees work in all departments and at all levels within your organization. It should not be compromised just of leadership individuals who may not be aware of the safety issues that lower levels works face in the workplace. Everyone's perspective is valuable in this type of setting, and your membership should reflect that.
Keep in mind that membership should not be permanent; membership should rotate over time, bringing in new perspectives and reflecting changes in the workplace. How often membership rotates will depend on how big your company is. You want to have some degree of consistency within the committee.
Start with Defined Goals
When putting together the committee, you want to have a purpose. Work with a certification company to come with basic short-term and long-term goals for the purpose of the committee. The goals you start out with should be general and easy to achieve. You should work with the committee over time to come up with more specific goals. Goals that the committee helps create together will help drive the committee to solutions. Having starting goals, and a plan for developing new goals will help you get started.
Providing Training to the Committee
Before your new committee dives into hard work, you should allow the committee to go through a training program together. Going through a training program together will help ensure everyone has access to the same tools and information on how the committee will work and how you can impact change. It can also ensure that everyone receives joint health and safety committee certification. The training should also go over workplace safety policies that are already in place to make sure everyone has the same knowledge of the ways your workplace is already trying to protect employees.
When starting a health and safety committee, you want to make sure that you pull in employees and management from numerous different levels. You want to provide training to everyone on committee operations and what safety procedures are already in place. Make sure you start with defined goals and have a plan for creating new goals everyone is united around.