Today, many Americans will take their kids to work with them for Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day. Kids will get to experience a day in the workplace and gain valuable insight into what their parents do for a living. But we ask; is it safe to take children into the workplace, especially heavier industries like the crane and construction industry?
Read on to find out.
WHAT IS TAKE OUR DAUGHTERS AND SONS TO WORK DAY?
Take Our Daughters and Sons To Work Day is a national day that gives American children a taste of the world of work. Launched by the Take Our Daughters and Sons To Work Foundation, the day involves parents taking their children to their workplace in order to expose them to job possibilities, show them what their parents do for work and get them involved in the workplace. Special activities may be organised by employers and the day is also just a good opportunity to have fun!
Occurring every fourth Thursday in April, take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day is incredibly popular; with more than 37 million Americans at over 3.5 million workplaces participating in 2018.
IS IT SAFE TO BRING CHILDREN INTO THE WORKPLACE?
Now, you might wonder why, if this day is an event in America, we are talking about it on a blog about cranes and lifting equipment?!
Well, over recent years, the concept has also become very popular in the UK and many workplaces and parents want to participate in similar events. The Employees Matter, Bring Your Child to Work Day has been a recent scheme that has proved popular, and many more are popping up; employers are also running their own in-house schemes.
This raises the question; is it safe to bring children to work?
In some instances, yes, it is – the risks are very low in office-based occupations for example. But what about construction firms or building sites? With heavy machinery including cranes, are these environments safe for kids?
With such great learning and career opportunities in the construction industry, it would be a shame if children couldn’t experience a day in the industry. Besides, imagine how exciting it would be for a child to see Dad driving a crane? Or Mum leading the way for women in the industry?
So long as the correct preparations are made and health and safety are made the top priority, there is no reason children shouldn’t be brought to work for a day.
MAKING THE WORKPLACE SAFE FOR KIDS
An office is a much safer environment than a manufacturing floor or building site. However, in every case, you should still conduct a risk assessment and ensure that the environment is safe for children to be in.
Before children are brought into the workplace, you should conduct a thorough inspection of the areas they will be entering to make sure it is as safe and free from hazards as possible. Pause or remove any work that may be too high risk, or limit access to those areas.
Once the kids are in the workplace, a health and safety briefing should form part of the introduction. Children should be shown the different areas they will be in, and what the risk of that area are. Standard health and safety information should be given, such as fire exit location and a reminder that they aren’t to wander off on their own at any time.
If the kids are going to be carrying out any work, no matter how small, each task should also be risk assessed and the appropriate training and supervision given.
Children in the workplace will also need the correct PPE, especially if they are entering building sites or working around machinery. Ensure that you have PPE that will fit children – hard hats and high-vis jackets, for example.
Show children that health and safety isn’t just a boring part of the job that people must observe; incorporate safety messages in any training and demonstrations you give.
For example, cranes and lifting equipment will be fascinating machines for kids, use their curiosity to talk about safety and ask them if they have any questions, or what they think the main safety concerns are when working with heavy machinery.
Safety is a core part of everyday work life; demonstrating this to will help instil good safety values in the next generation of workers!
CONTACT CRANE SPECIALISTS ALTIDA
All of our staff are fully trained in health and safety and competent in safely operating and rigging cranes. If you have any questions around crane hire and crane safety get in touch with us on 01246261915 or email firstname.lastname@example.org