Received from: College of Podiatry
The TUC and affiliated unions have raised many times over the years, major issues with PPE and issues with poor fit. One example is the disproportionate impact on female workers due to most PPE not being made to fit their body shape or size.
This has come to the fore due to Covid-19. The College of Podiatry has been contacted by many members having difficulties getting properly fitted PPE, especially facemasks, due to masks being too big for their faces and thus not being able to pass ‘fit tests’.
There is also a lack of attention in the design of PPE to those who, for example, have facial hair due to their religious beliefs and we had examples of managers asking staff to shave to make the PPE fit.
Legally, PPE is supposed to be suitable for the individual but for too long employers have been allowed to get away with providing one size fits all PPE from footwear to facemasks. This is putting workers’ health and lives at risk and was even more heightened by the pandemic.
Congress therefore calls on the TUC to work with the affiliated unions to fight for correctly fitting PPE and where necessary ensure the legal frameworks already in place are used against rogue employers who do not take adequate steps to protect their workforces safety.
College of Podiatry