Training for health and safety representatives

Organising for Health and Safety

The essential course for new health and safety representatives is Organising for Health and Safety. You will learn about health and safety legislation, including the law relating to risk assessment, and also your employer’s responsibilities.

It will help you work with members to tackle workplace issues and develop your confidence to represent them effectively. You can complete follow-on training on topics such as display screen equipment, manual handling, mental health at work, and more.

Tackling Stress in the Workplace

This two-day follow-on course will help participants to:

  • understand what stress is
  • understand the causes of stress and its effects on the health of members
  • be familiar with statutory and common law concerning stress
  • understand how risk assessments can be used as part of a workplace strategy on stress prevention
  • prepare and implement a policy on stress prevention
  • identify measures to include in a workplace stress reduction programme
  • develop stress resource materials and information for use in the workplace and union

Bullying at Work

This two-day course will help participants to:

  • define and recognise workplace bullying and harassment
  • identify work organisation and staffing issues that contribute to bullying and harassment
  • understand how employment law principles and health and safety legislation apply to workplace bullying and harassment
  • make employers aware of what they can do to recognise and eliminate workplace bullying and harassment
  • develop a workplace strategy to inform members about what to do if they suffer or witness bullying and harassment
  • develop a workplace policy to address bullying and harassment
  • understand that bullying and harassment affects everyone and can be seen in a wider context beyond that of a health and safety issue

Sickness Absence Policies

This course is designed for activists who have some experience of dealing with sickness absence issues and who wish to understand the issues in more depth. It can also be used by those activists with less experience but who are faced with an unfair sickness absence policy and wish to know more.

The course will help participants to;

  • identify common problems
  • identify ways to improve policies
  • be aware of the way stress impacts on sickness levels
  • practice attending a sickness monitoring interview
  • be aware of equality issues
  • put together an action plan for the branch

Contact your regional education team to find out about training near you

Find out more about the role of the health and safety representative

UNISON health and safety resources

Booking and attending courses


Photograph © Jess Hurd/