To comply with the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act (HSWA) and related regulations, all employers (including partnerships, sole traders and the self-employed) must have a health and safety policy. And, where more than four people are employed, the policy must be written down.
The health and safety policy is a key element to comply with other legislation, especially the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations (MHSWR). Alongside various other regulations, the MHSWR expands the general duties set out in the HSWA and establishes a framework for health and safety management.
Besides complying with the law, an effective health and safety policy will help ensure a structured approach to the identification, assessment and control of risks. This will prevent or reduce the likelihood of people getting injured, ill or killed through work activities, reduce the likelihood of criminal prosecution and/or civil claims and the resultant costs, as well as promote a safety culture that increases productivity and supports a positive reputation.