The Myth:

frustrated bald man

Health & safety is just more red tape hindering business!

The Reality:

Keeping workers safe and healthy is not needless bureaucracy.  Red tape is usually described as tasks imposed on businesses that are costly, overly complicated and unnecessary. A sensible, common sense approach to managing workplace safety is none of these things.  

For the vast majority of employers, ensuring a safe place of work does not need to be expensive – in fact evidence shows that it is good for business and will save you money. Research carried out for The Health and Safety Authority confirmed that occupational injuries and illness can cause significant financial losses for employers, including: 

  • salary costs for replacement staff or overtime payments,
  • lost productivity,
  • compensation costs,
  • retraining costs, and
  • increased insurance payments. 

Recent figures revealed an average cost per workplace accident of €9,000, while the average employer's liability payout is over €32,000. 

But while the business case for having a safe workplace is clear to see, we should also never forget the human cost of workplace accidents. Last year 56 people were killed in Irish workplaces and many others suffered serious injury. The devastating effects of these incidents should remind us all of the need to keep workers safe. Maintaining a safe and healthy workplace is not an unnecessary burden – it makes financial sense and is the right thing to do.