HONG KONG SAFETY SNAPSHOTS: MANAGING EMPLOYEE MENTAL HEALTH

For some time, we’ve seen a gradual increase in employee mental health issues in the workplace and, the events of last year have accelerated this. A survey conducted by the Mental Health Association of Hong Kong, together with Tung Wah College released in June 2021 found that over 60% of Hong Kong employees interviewed, suffered … Read more

UK Covid-19: new “Working Safely” guidance published, stressing the importance of ventilation, face coverings in enclosed crowded areas, and a phased return to the office

The new “Working Safely” guidance to apply from Step 4 of the Government”s Roadmap on Monday 19 July has been published here.  There is a general overview plus six sector-specific guides. The overview highlights the key point that businesses still have a legal duty to manage risks, in particular to carry out a health and … Read more

UK Covid-19: ‘Freedom Day’ to go ahead, but continuing precautions advised

Yesterday evening the Prime Minister confirmed that Step 4 of the Government’s roadmap will go ahead on Monday 19 July.  The legal rules on social distancing, social contact and face coverings and the instruction to work from home where possible will be lifted from that date, but the Government “expects and recommends a gradual return” … Read more

UK Covid-19: “work from home” guidance continues to 19 July; recent tribunal cases highlight issues for employers planning return to the workplace

Yesterday evening saw the postponement of ‘Freedom Day’ and the continuation of the ‘work from home if possible’ guidance until 19 July.  The news is disappointing for all and economically challenging for many, particularly given that it seems there will not be any delay to the requirement for employers to contribute 10% to furlough pay … Read more

Hong Kong Safety Snapshots: protections for ill and injured workers

Like many jurisdictions, Hong Kong has various statutory measures in place to protect injured workers. It can be complex in understanding the scope of various protections and what employers can and cannot do when managing the employment of an ill or injured employee. This Safety Snapshot highlights the key protections and provides practical tips for … Read more

UK: recent cases provide insights into level of fines for health and safety offences by very large organisations

Since February 2016, judges imposing fines for Corporate Manslaughter, health and safety offences and food safety offences have been required to follow a methodology set out in the Sentencing Council’s Definitive Guideline (the “Guideline”). The stated aims of the Guideline included increasing the level of fines imposed on larger companies and providing greater certainty. Whilst … Read more

Hong Kong Safety Snapshots: Mandating and Tracking Employee Vaccinations

We have seen now different countries rolling out various COVID-19 vaccinations. Employers and employees are keen to see some sort of semblance of how things were or at least a lifting of restrictions, but with such novel vaccines there are many questions that are still unanswered. By now, many Hong Kong employers will have established … Read more

Employment Espresso Pods: Return to work: Jabs, Tests & Psychedelic Zebras

We are delighted to launch a new podcast series: “Employment Espresso Pods” Join Herbert Smith Freehills’ Employment team for a coffee catch up as they discuss current hot topics impacting the employment sphere. In this, first episode, the team looks at returning to work in the UK following the Covid-19 pandemic. They tackle issues including … Read more

UK Covid-19: round-up of recent changes for employers to 31 March 2021

The pandemic has presented a constant challenge for employers in keeping up with frequent changes to rules and guidance.  As the restrictions now start to ease, we set out below a summary of recent developments: Although the “stay at home” instruction has been lifted from 29 March 2021, individuals are still asked to minimise travel … Read more