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How can employers take care of employees in hot weather? Margaret Adewale of HR Dept Gloucester

By Margaret Adewale, HR Dept Gloucester 

It has recently been highlighted in the press that temperatures are set to soar above 35 degrees next week.

While there is no legal minimum or maximum temperature for workplaces in the UK, employers are obligated to ensure that the temperature in workplaces is 'reasonable'.

People's health and safety should be first and foremost and employers should be particularly mindful of people with a disability or health condition.

Be sensible and consider what can be done to keep the workplace more comfortable, consulting with employees for ideas as appropriate.

For example:

  • Consider the use of fans and air conditioning where available
  • Ensuring that windows can be opened
  • Shading employees from direct sunlight with blinds or by using reflective film on windows to reduce the heating effects of the sun
  • Situating workstations away from direct sunlight or other situations or objects that that radiate heat
  • Encourage staff to take regular breaks as needed
  • Provide cold refreshments such a bottled water
  • Consider a relaxed dress code
  • Focus on vulnerable employees - those who are pregnant, disabled or have health conditions
  • Turn off excess electrical equipment which generate excess heat
  • Allow for flexible working hours due to potential heat-related problems with public transport

The key is common sense.

For further advise on this and any other HR matter contact Margaret Adewale at the HR Dept Gloucester - Tel: 01452 405280 email: margaret.adewale@hrdept.co.uk.

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