Health and Safety

Safety and Health Week: Creating Safer Workplaces  

May 9, 2024

What is Safety and Health Week? 

Safety and Health Week takes place annually, starting the second week of May. This year it runs from May 6 to 11. This awareness week promotes  health and safety in the workplace and beyond. For a business owner or HR professional, it’s also an excellent opportunity to come together and stress the organization’s commitment to its workers’ physical and mental wellbeing. 

Any organization can play an active role in promoting health and safety during Safety and Health Week. Below, we’ve outlined some ideas to get you to help get you started: 

How to promote Safety and Health Week

Raise Awareness

Use this week to talk about occupational health and safety. Some workers may not be entirely aware of their rights and may work in unsafe workplaces or situations. Educate your employees about the importance of education and training and encourage them to speak up if they notice any hazards or risks, conduct regular hazard and risk assessments of the workplace, and review your policies to ensure they are up to date and compliant with relevant legislation. 

Organize an event 

Check the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety to see the events they host and communicate them to employees. Teach your employees about the benefits of ensuring workplace health. This could include inviting speakers, hosting safety lunch-and-learns, or using this as a segue to enrol employees in training sessions. Our online training library contains several courses that focus on the importance of promoting a safety-first workplace culture. To learn more, book a free demo and see our course catalogue and other HR services.  

Arrange safety drills 

Organize fire drills, update health and safety checklists, or test emergency training scenarios for your colleagues during this week. This way, employees will know what to do during an emergency before it happens. It may be impossible to eliminate every hazard in a workplace, but it’s imperative to address the hazards by putting control measures in place to reduce the risks involved. 

The costs of neglecting health and safety in the workplace 

Neglecting health and safety in the workplace can have severe consequences for organizations. Failing to provide a safe and healthy work environment can result in increased absenteeism, high employee turnover rates, reduced productivity, and significant financial costs. Workplace accidents and injuries can result in legal liabilities, reputational damage, and decreased customer satisfaction. Moreover, in extreme cases, ignoring health and safety can lead to fatalities and severe, lifelong injuries, which can have a devastating effect on the workers, their families, and the organization. Canadian organizations need to prioritize the wellbeing of their employees in the workplace, both for their wellbeing and for the success of their business. 

Foster a safety-first culture this Safety and Health Week 

Safety and Health Week is an excellent occasion for HR professionals to advance health and safety in the organization. By actively participating in creating safe and healthy workplaces, you can help employees thrive and succeed in their roles. Fostering a safe and healthy work environment reduces workplace accidents, increases productivity, and enhances employee morale. HR professionals play a pivotal role in ensuring that their organizations are safe and healthy. Make the most of this week and use it to educate your workforce and promote a culture committed to safety. 

Avoid health and safety risks at your organization with HRdownloads’ advice and online training  

Offering health and safety training at the right time can mean the difference between a worker going home safely or not. At HRdownloads, we offer HR software, HR content, HR compliance, and HR support. We also have hundreds of online training courses available on our flexible and accessible platform. As the topic of workplace safety is broad, there are many different aspects to focus on, and implementing it can get confusing. What exactly do we mean by promoting total health and wellness in the workplace? What does it mean for HR professionals and business decision-makers? 

Download our free Workplace Health and Safety Checklist and Toolkit to find out!