Data Shows The UK Ahead Of The EU In Health & Safety Perceptions

Posted on written by Sam Barton

With all the talk focused on Brexit and how it is going to affect us in the UK, new data has been released that shows that Britain generally has a more positive outlook on health and safety than the rest of the EU.

Brexit is unlikely to change a great deal of health and safety regulations in the UK and while we might not be leaving the EU just yet, the British workforce generally feels more positive than other countries in the EU.

This data was compiled by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work (EU-OSHA) and mostly focused on the challenges ageing has on staff.

Health Being Negatively Impacted By Work

Health, particularly mental health, being affected by your job is a common theme in health and safety discussion.

The good news is that 23% of workers in the UK thought that their health whether physical or mental was being negatively impacted by work compared to 27% across the rest of the EU. The UK has one of the better safety records in Europe. In fact the number of workers taking sick leave was significantly lower in the UK than anywhere else.

Employees taking time off due to a work related conditions is 1.9% compared to 5.4% in France and 7.7% in Poland.

Age Discrimination In The UK

Another area where the UK seemed more positive than the rest of the EU was in terms of age discrimination and how they will cope in the job as they get older.

Only 17% of those surveyed thought that they would be unable to do carry out their job at 60 in Britain compared to 22% in Europe. 45% of workers in the EU felt that they were being discriminated against because of their age whereas this number was only 39% in the UK.

Getting older seems to have less of an effect on workers in Britain than anywhere else in Europe.

Communicating Health And Safety Concerns

Finally, the UK is way ahead of the EU when it comes to communicating health and safety in the workplace.

One of the main reasons as to why accidents occur at work or people feel negative about going to work is by a failure to communicate between staff and management. Good communication is key to a health and safe environment.

80% of workers felt that health and safety was communicated effectively in the UK however across the EU this fell to just 59% – quite a significant difference.

Health And Safety In The UK And EU

The UK has led the way in health and safety for a number of years and workers seem generally more positive in Britain than they do across the rest of the EU.

Even though Brexit is creating an element of uncertainty which will persist in the short-term, this doesn’t seem to have created a negative view among the British workforce.

With the introduction of the Helping Great Britain Work Well strategy which is being rolled out over the next 5 years coupled with the existing positivity then the UK can continue its fine health and safety tradition for the foreseeable future.

UK Health and Safety compared with EU - British flag and worker with hard hat

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