HSE International ISSUE 109 - Page 6

NEWS BURKA FRIENDLY PPE DESIGNED BY THAMES TIDEWAY CONSTRUCTION WORKER With the support of colleagues, she was encouraged to present her original designs to the manufacturers, who produced prototypes and samples. It is thought this is the first time in the world that PPE has been specifically designed for women who observe the hijab and the burka. Leena said: “As a Muslim woman working in construction, I have experienced how difficult it can be to adhere to my religious values whilst also complying with health and safety requirements on a construction site. “I had a lot of support and encouragement from colleagues and it’s been so great to see the designs come to life. I hope this helps promote the image of construction as an inclusive, diverse industry to work in.” Andy Mitchell, CEO of Tideway, said: “As an industry, there is so much more we need to do to increase inclusivity and diversity. “Leena’s fantastic idea can help us address an issue that may have been overlooked in the past, but could help make construction a much more friendly and attractive industry to work in. I am so proud of the support and encouragement from the Tideway team, which allows ideas like Leena’s to create positive change.” NEW INITIATIVE AIMS FOR OCCUPATIONAL HEALTH STEP CHANGE Occupational health of around 12,000 electrical operatives to be safeguarded. A A Muslim woman working on London’s ‘super sewer’ has helped design two innovative items of protective clothing (PPE) for women on construction sites who observe the hijab and the burka. L eena Begum, who works as a Health, Safety and Wellbeing Coordinator for the joint venture building the west section of the Thames Tideway Tunnel, came up with the designs after encountering difficulties in finding suitable protective clothing to wear on site. 6 HSE INTERNATIONAL major new initiative is being launched in January 2018 to help safeguard the health of around 12,000 operatives across the electrical industry. Members of the Joint Industry Board (JIB), which was created by electrotechnical and engineering services trade body the ECA and trade union Unite, will be able to receive Occupational Health Assessment (OHA) funding for all employees covered by the JIB Benefits Scheme. Each eligible operative can receive a funded OHA, every three years. The assessments will cover 10 employee wellbeing elements, including respiratory function, hearing and blood pressure. For the employer, the assessment helps to provide an indication of what steps need to be taken on site to improve the health and wellbeing of employees. According to Paul Reeve, the ECA’s Director responsible for Health, Safety & Environment: “This initiative shows our industry’s ongoing commitment to corporate social responsibility. The electrical industry already has an impressive safety record,