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The key to providing and maintaining a safe and healthy environment, equipment and systems of working is to manage all hazards and risk.
Members, volunteers and staff should identify the hazards associated with any activity they plan to undertake and assess the risks to establish whether any precautions should be taken to ensure risks do not exceed a tolerable level. Risk level can range from negligible (insignificant) to high (unacceptable) with the precautions and costs needed increasing accordingly. Generally, risk assessment for routine activities, where the level of risk is negligible, may not necessitate documentation. However, before commencing the activity, vigilance is recommended to ensure that nothing significant has changed at the venue, to the participants or with any equipment to be used such that the level of risk may have increased.
If the risk cannot be reduced to a low level it is advised that the documented risk assessment be agreed with an individual having the appropriate authority (e.g. incumbent, church warden, venue manager).
Before commencement of the activity the participants should be briefed on the actions and precautions they are to observe.
The documented risk assessment should be kept available for consultation by interested parties before and during the activity. Retention of the document is advised for use at future events.
Resources have been identified and gathered from a number of sources, in particular from Mary Sumner House and Health & Safety Executive. These are supplemented by items specific to MU Diocese of Oxford events. These resources provide information on good working practices, the management of risk and legal requirements.
Guidelines and associated check lists cover the following subjects:
- Hazard identification and risk assessment;
- Terms of reference for the use of third party premises for MU events;
- Safety and welfare arrangements for MU events;
- Liaising with venue management over health, safety and welfare arrangements;
- Fire and emergency response arrangements for MU events;
- Fire safety notice
- Fêtes and other outdoor events open to members and non-members;
- Catering, compliance with food hygiene regulations;
- Recording of accidents and the reporting of injuries, diseases and dangerous occurrences.
Using this table MU Members and volunteers may identify the resources needed according to their role, responsibility and the activity to be undertaken. Cross referencing Activity and Role, read across the table below to find advice and hyperlinks to guidelines and checklists. Initial reference should be made to the MU Diocese of Oxford resources.
Mothers’ Union, Diocese of Oxford policy, so far as is reasonably practicable, is to provide and maintain safe and healthy environment, equipment and systems of working for all our employees, Members and voluntary helpers, and to provide such information, training and supervision as they need for this purpose. We will endeavour to ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the safety and welfare of all who attend our meetings and events.
The allocation of duties for safety and welfare matters and the particular arrangements that we make to implement the policy are set out in the Members’ Guide.
To ensure safety and welfare matters are kept constantly under review, an item on Safety and Welfare will be on the agenda for all meetings of the Finance and Administration Unit, and employees and Members will be consulted to seek their views on safety and welfare matters.
The policy will be kept up to date, particularly in the light of any changes to our staff, membership or activities. To ensure this, the policy and the way in which it has operated will be reviewed regularly and the appropriate changes made. A full review of the policy and its performance shall be conducted following each new triennium.
The Policy and supporting guidelines are drafted by the Safety and Welfare Officer in consultation with the Trustees of the Mothers’ Union, Diocese of Oxford, and aligned with the resources provided by Mary Sumner House, to provide instruction and guidance to MU staff, volunteers and Members in the safe management of MU events to meet the requirements of legislation regarding Health, Safety and Welfare.
Activities of the Mothers’ Union, Diocese of Oxford and all events and gatherings organized in its name.