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REPORTS

Joint Report of the Council and the General Board on arrangements for health and safety matters within the University

The COUNCIL and the GENERAL BOARD beg leave to report to the University as follows:

1. In the Lent Term 1999 the General Board appointed a Review Committee, chaired by Dr K. B. Pretty, to review the University arrangements for health and safety. A Notice was published in Reporter, 1998-99, p. 411, setting out the membership of the Committee and its terms of reference. The Committee examined in detail the management of health and safety in the University and the role of the University Safety Adviser and the Safety Office, reporting finally to the General Board in the Easter Term, 1999.

2. Following the early retirement of the University Safety Adviser, Mrs S. Cooper was appointed to a new post of Director of Health and Safety in May 2000. In accordance with the recommendations of the Review Committee's report the Council and the General Board now propose new arrangements for the determination of health and safety policy within the University.

3. The existing Committee for Safety was established in the 1970s and is itself served by six sub-committees dealing with the specialist topics of Biological Safety, Chemical Safety, Ionizing Radiation, First Aid, Education and Training, and Environmental Issues. The business of the sub-committees is reported to the Committee for Safety and thence to the General Board. The Committee for Safety is therefore primarily an information channel, not an executive body, and is not involved in the decision-making processes for safety.

4. The Committee for Safety has served the University well for over twenty years, but its composition and terms of reference are no longer appropriate to the University management structure and to the development of a pro-active safety management culture. Furthermore, such a committee is not able to give management effect to the safety policy and strategy developed by the Director of Health and Safety.

5. Accordingly, a new committee, the Health and Safety Executive Committee, is proposed, which will be a joint committee of the Council and the General Board governed by the regulations set out in Annex 1 to this Report. It is further proposed that the exist-ing Committee for Safety be reconstituted as the Consultative Committee for Safety to reflect more accurately the nature of its business. This Committee will report to the Health and Safety Executive Committee. It will be governed by substantially the same regulations as the present Committee with minor amendments to its constitution, as set out in Annex 2 to this Report. Five of the present sub-committees will continue to provide specialist information to the Consultative Committee. Responsibility for environmental issues will be transferred to the Estate Management and Building Service, reporting through the Buildings Sub-Committee of the Finance Committee. It is proposed that these arrangements be reviewed in due course.

6. These proposals have been discussed, through the Director of Health and Safety, with the Joint Trade Union group, who have agreed for their part to the new committee structure.

7. As a result of the proposed new arrangements the regulations for Senior Technical Officers require minor amendment.

8. The Council and General Board recommend:

I. That a Health and Safety Executive Committee be established, with effect from 1 January 2001, and governed with the regulations set out in Annex 1 to this Report.

II. That, with effect from the same date, the Committee of Safety be reconstituted as the Consultative Committee for Safety, and that the regulations for the Committee (Statutes and Ordinances, p. 150) be replaced by the regulations set out in Annex 2 to this Report.

III. That, with effect from the same date, the regulations for Senior Technical Officers (Statutes and Ordinances, p. 689) be amended as follows:

Regulation 1(d).

By replacing, in the last line of proviso (i), the words 'Committee for Safety' with the words 'Health and Safety Executive Committee'.

29 January 2001 ALEC N. BROERS, Vice-Chancellor GORDON JOHNSON J. M. R. MATHESON
  A. J. BADGER IAN LESLIE G. A. REID
  C. R. J. BAILEY A. M. LONSDALE JEREMY SANDERS
  MAT COAKLEY C. LUDLOW M. SCHOFIELD
  PETER GODDARD D. W. MACDONALD LIBA TAUB
  D. A. GOOD M. D. MACLEOD  
 
17 January 2001 ALEC N. BROERS, Vice-Chancellor KEITH GLOVER PETER LIPTON
  A. J. BADGER MALCOLM GRANT A. C. MINSON
  P. J. BAYLEY J. C. GRAY KATE PRETTY
  N. BULLOCK BRIAN F. G. JOHNSON M. SCHOFIELD

annex 1

Health and Safety Executive Committee

1. The Health and Safety Executive Committee shall be a committee jointly of the Council and the General Board and shall consist of:

(a) the Vice-Chancellor (or a duly appointed deputy) as Chairman;
(b) three members of the Regent House appointed by the Council on the recommendation of the General Board of whom one shall be from an institution within the Schools of Arts and Humanities or the Humanities and Social Sciences and one from an institution within the Schools of the Biological Sciences, Physical Sciences, or Technology;
(c) the Chairman of the Consultative Committee for Safety;
(d) not more than two persons co-opted by the Committee, provided that it shall not be obligatory for the Committee to co-opt any person or persons.

2. Members in class (b) shall be appointed in the Michaelmas Term to serve for four years from 1 January next following their appointment. Co-opted members shall serve until 31 December of the year in which they are co-opted or of the following year, as the Committee shall determine at the time of their co-optation. The Director of Health and Safety, the Director of Personnel, and the Director of the Estate Management and Building Service shall have the right to attend meetings of the Committee. The Secretary of the Committee shall be appointed by the Registrary.

3. The Committee shall:

(a) ensure the necessary management actions are taken to give effect to University health and safety policy;
(b) review the effectiveness of the University health and safety policy at intervals agreed by the Committee, but not exceeding two years;
(c) review University strategy on health and safety at intervals not exceeding two years;
(d) ensure that information about decisions on health and safety is communicated from the Committee to staff of the University;
(e) receive annual reports on health and safety;
(f) receive regular summary reports from the Consultative Committee for Safety and the Occupational Health Committee, and receive information from other sources where appropriate to health and safety;
(g) oversee and, where appropriate, approve the development of University health and safety policy.

4. The Committee shall make an Annual Report to the Council and the General Board.

5. The Committee shall meet at least once in each term.

Annex 2

Consultative Committee for Safety

1. The Consultative Committee for Safety shall consist of:

(a) the Vice-Chancellor (or a duly appointed deputy) as Chairman;
(b) one person appointed by the Council;
(c) six members of the Senate appointed by the General Board, of whom one shall be nominated by the Council of the School of Arts and Humanities, one by the Council of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences, one by the Council of the School of the Physical Sciences, one by the Council of the School of the Biological Sciences, one by the Council of the School of Technology, and one by the Faculty Board of Clinical Medicine;
(d) one person appointed by the Council on the nomination of the Finance Committee;
(e) one member of the Cambridge Association of University Teachers appointed by that Association;
(f) such number of University assistants as will ensure that each organization to which the Council have granted negotiating rights is represented by one member, provided that each member in this class shall have power to appoint a deputy to take his or her place at a particular meeting;
(g) two persons in statu pupillari, of whom one at least shall be a graduate, appointed by the Council;
(h) the Senior Occupational Health Nurse, ex officio;
(i) the Director of University Biomedical Support Services, ex officio;
(j) the Director of the Estate Management and Building Service, ex officio;
(k) the University officers who are competent to advise on safety;
(l) not more than three members co-opted by the Committee, provided that it shall not be obligatory for the Committee to co-opt any person or persons.

Members in classes (b), (c), (d), (e), and (f) shall be appointed in the Michaelmas Term to serve for four years from 1 January following their appointment. Members in class (g) shall be appointed to serve for one year from 1 October. Members in class (l) shall serve until 31 December of the year in which they are co-opted, or of the following year, as the Committee shall determine at the time of their co-optation. A person appointed in class (e) or class (f) shall cease to be a member if the Chairman is notified in writing that the appointment has been terminated by the trade union which appointed him or her. The Secretary of the Committee shall be appointed by the Registrary.

2. The Committee shall be responsible for advising the Health and Safety Executive Committee on all matters concerning safety in the University.

3. The Committee shall establish the following standing sub-committees: one for Ionizing and Non-Ionizing Radiation Hazards, one for Biological Hazards, one for Education and Training (Occupational Safety and Health), one for First Aid Arrangements, and one for Chemical Hazards. The Committee shall determine the duties and powers of each standing sub-committee and may amend those duties and powers from time to time. The Chairman and Secretary of the Consultative Committee for Safety shall have the right to attend any meeting of a sub-committee.

4. The University officer designated as University Radiation Officer shall have access to the records maintained in Departments of the kinds and amounts of radioactive substances used, the methods used for their disposal, and the lists of persons working on radioactive substances, ionizing and non-ionizing radiations, or laser beams.


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Cambridge University Reporter, 31 January 2001
Copyright © 2011 The Chancellor, Masters and Scholars of the University of Cambridge.