Tag Archives: Health and safety

Think first when cycling during winter

It’s true, winter is coming and bringing with it colder and darker days. If you are cycling in the dark take care of yourself and look out for others when you’re on your bike.

Cycling brings a lot of freedom, you can cycle on the road, cycle paths and take shortcuts. This all makes cyclists quite mysterious, and some might say, unpredictable which can make pedestrians and motorists nervous.

Be a considerate cyclist and take a look at the tips below.

Tips to cycling in winter

  • Be seen – wear bright and reflective clothing.
  • Light up – make sure you have working head and tail lights on your bike.
  • Be predictable – use hand signals to let everyone know where you’re going.
  • Take care – cycle carefully in shaded areas where there might be ice and when it’s wet.
  • Wear your helmet – your brain is a valuable asset.

If you have more smart tips on cycle safety for winter, share them in the comments below.

Take care around James Logie building

From Monday 11 March there will be increased truck movements around James Logie building. Take care when you are in the area, follow directions on signage and use dedicated footpaths. With increased truck movements in the area it is also important not to stop your car in front of site gates to drop off and pick up others.

All trucks moving in and out of the site will have a spotter on foot, but you still need to take care in the area and be aware of your surroundings.

Think first. Kia mataara.

Health & Safety Training Courses 2019

The 2019 H&S Training Schedule has been finalised and enrolments are now open for the H&S Core Training.

  • Comprehensive First Aid (Unit Standards 06400, 06401, 06402)  – If your role requires that you have First Aid Certification please enrol onto this course. Enrolments for General First Aiders are reviewed, and approved based on the level of cover per area. If you have several First Aiders in your area your enrolment may not be approved.
  • First Aid Revalidation – If you are a First Aid Certificate holder please check you expiry date (can be found here), and book onto a corresponding Revalidation course. You have 3 months from the expiry of your certificate to revalidate, otherwise you will need to take the 2 day Comprehensive course. 
  • Field Activities Training – If your role requires you be a Field Activity Leader or Deputy Leader, you will need ensure that you have attended the Field Activity Training.  If you have not attended the training in over 2 years, now would be a good time to refresh your training. Should anything happen on any Field Trip that you are leading the investigators will be looking at your training record to ensure that you have met your obligations.
  • Fire Extinguisher and Evacuation Training – This course is relevant to all staff, particularly named Building and Floor wardens, but as important to any staff who work in areas that are ‘First to Armband’ such as teaching spaces. It is facilitated by Fire Fighting Pacific, and includes a practical Fire Extinguisher use, which increases your confidence to pick up an extinguisher and use it to clear your exit if needed.
  • Risk Management – This course should be attended by all staff who identify, control, and monitor hazards and risks in their area of work (that is possibly everyone).
  • Health and Safety Rep Training – Please contact Angie Willington for information relating to your H&S Rep training.

Please discuss your training requirements with your manager and complete any enrolments via UCPeople.

If you have any questions regarding enrolling in a course please contact learningdevelopment@canterbury.ac.nz, or phone Marjorie Blake.

Prevention of Harassment and Bullying Policy

UC’s Harassment Policy has recently been revised and is now called the Prevention of Harassment and Bullying Policy.

UC is committed to providing a harassment-free and bullying-free environment where all people are treated with respect and dignity and can contribute and participate to their full potential.

The UC community is encouraged to familiarise themselves with the revised policy via the UC Policy Library.

Animals on Campus Policy – what you need to know

Following careful consideration of concerns relating to the presence of dogs in UC buildings, a decision was made to establish an Animals on Campus Policy which allows animals on campus if restrained, and restricts access to animals in UC buildings except for exceptional circumstances that have been approved by the Vice-Chancellor.

The starting point for the policy was to consider the health and safety of all staff and students, including phobias and allergies triggered by the close proximity of animals. All staff should have the right to a safe and healthy working environment.

Since the policy was announced, the Vice-Chancellor has received a total of nine requests to allow ten animals into buildings. In two of these occasions, medical evidence was provided explaining the animal concerned supported the wellbeing of a staff member.

The general argument from these requests is that the animal concerned (mainly but not exclusively dogs) has regularly come into UC buildings, in some cases for a number of years, and it would be inconvenient if a past practice was not allowed to continue. The requests assert that these animals have never caused a problem and in some cases, written support has also been provided by colleagues in close proximity to the animal concerned.

No requests have been made for a certified support animal, such as a seeing eye dog, or a dog to support the hearing impaired etc.  

The Vice-Chancellor concluded that a strict interpretation of the policy is the only way to ensure consistent and fair treatment and therefore advised all applicants that they were no longer able to bring their animals into UC buildings.

He did however offer a transition period, strictly for those that had already submitted an exemption request, which will end on 31 December 2018. Staff were strongly encouraged to contact their HR Advisor for other ways UC can provide support with emotional health and wellbeing.

For more, please refer to the Animals on Campus Policy, now available from the Policy Library>

Supporting FAQs:

  1. Why is there a need for this policy?
    To ensure we meet our obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act and to provide a framework for balancing the needs and wellbeing of all people on campus.
  2. Who is liable if an animal on campus injures a student, staff member, or another animal: is it the animal’s owner, or the University?
    It is possible that SMT members, Council members and the animal’s owner will all be liable.
  3. Are injuries caused by animals on campus (registered or unregistered) covered by ACC?
    Probably, but that’s for ACC to determine on a case by case basis.
  4. Is it possible to make a case to the Vice-Chancellor for a psychological support animal?
    Possibly, although it is determined on a case by case basis. An individual student or staff member’s preferences and needs will be balanced with those of others on campus, the operational business needs and other matters set out in the policy. If the animal is a disability support dog that is certified by one of the organisations listed in the policy then VC approval will not be required.
  5. If it is possible to make a case for a psychological support animal, will a medical certificate from  a GP, counsellor or psychologist suffice?
    It will be determined on a case by case basis. A clear diagnosis is more compelling than a letter of support from a GP, as most pet owners could suggest their animal provides them with psychological support. Other potential methods of supporting a staff member’s wellbeing will also be taken into account.

Paul O’Flaherty
Executive Director of Human Resources | Kaihautū Matua Pūmanawa Tangata