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Thousands make a change for healthier, safer sites

Thousands make a change for healthier, safer sites

On the 13th April 60,000 people from across UK infrastructure joined forces to help drive better health, safety and wellbeing in the sector by taking part in what is thought to be the largest ever cross-industry stand-down.

At 10am, more than 1,000 sites, office and production facilities across the country took part in Stop. Make a Change, with the aim of tackling some of the key health & safety challenges faced by the sector.

Since it was launched in November 2016 more than 50 organisations – from the sector’s largest customers to small and specialist SMEs - signed up to support the initiative. More than 30 also made specific commitments which were launched as part of their company’s stand-down.

The commitments relate to four priorities which have been chosen by an industry expert panel - mental health, fatigue, plant safety and respiratory health. Each organisation has chosen commitments that will focus on improving performance within their business, supporting better outcomes for employees in each area.

Stop. Make a Change was supported by CITB’s Structured Fund as part of Infrastructure 21, a Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) led project to help ensure that civils suppliers are primed ready for expected growth in the sector in the coming years.

Discussing the campaign, CITB chief executive Sarah Beale said: “It’s great to see so many employers getting behind this important campaign. While we know that there has been sustained improvements in health and safety in recent years, there is much more to be done.

Stop. Make a Change signals a new, heightened awareness of health and wellbeing issues among construction firms and their employees across the UK, which CITB is pleased to support.”

CECA chief executive Alasdair Reisner added: When we first started planning Stop. Make a Change we hoped that we might get up to 10 companies and a few thousand employers involved in this first year. The response from industry has been tremendous, with a real desire to use the event as an opportunity to deliver positive change across the sector. We are looking forward to events today, and the health, safety and wellbeing improvements that they will drive.”

Organisations involved in Stop. Make a Change will provide feedback on the impact that the commitments that they have made have had upon their business, with best practice shared between all contributing organisations later this year.